FOR nearly six years, people talked about the much-ballyhooed bout between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
And when the deal was finally sealed, promoters of both camps agreed, those six years of continuous debate among fight fans and boxing experts would be enough to sell the fight and make it as the richest event in the history of sport.
Pacquiao and Mayweather held their only press conference Thursday morning (Manila time) in Los Angeles in what is deemed as just a formality to announce their 12-round welterweight title fight on May 2 at the MGM Grand Garden in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mayweather’s handlers and Pacquiao’s trainers said all of their focus and energy will be spent throughout their whole training camp, thus assuring fight fans of a top-quality fight between two superbly conditioned fighters.
The press conference started with Pacquiao and Mayweather being introduced towards the stage and later on stood face to face for more than a minute.
“It felt good. I’m ready and he’s ready. This is a very important and big fight. It’s going to be a historic fight,” said Pacquiao. “I know this is what you’ve been waiting for since five years ago. The fight is on and I know you are very excited.”
Mayweather, meanwhile, took the presser as an opportunity to thank those involved in making the dream fight become a reality.
“It’s been a long road but we’re here now. May 2nd, fight of the century. It’s all about the best, fighting the best,” said Mayweather. “Pacquiao is one of the best fighters of this era and everything is about timing and you know, I think we couldn’t choose a better time. Our game plan is to be smart and take it one fight at a time.”
Mayweather, 38, was surprisingly mild mannered the entire presscon, a contrast to his previous pressers, where he would usually brag about himself.
The undefeated American boxer also professed the importance of this bout in his 47-fight career.
“Unbelievable match-up. Action-packed fight, I’m in the gym working right now dedicating myself to the sport pushing myself to the limit because I never wanted to win a fight so bad in my life. And I’m pretty sure he’s gonna push himself to the limit because he wants to win the same way I want to win,” said Mayweather.
Meantime, Pacquiao said nothing much will change in terms of how they prepared for Mayweather five years ago when compared with the kind of training camp they are now having at the Wild Card Gym in Holloywood.
“The same. More hard work in training to make sure. He has a good defense but I’m not worried about that. I can easily break that defense,” said Pacquiao.
Mayweather, on the other hand, said Pacquiao’s past defeats may turn out to be a huge obstacle the Filipino sensation may face once they start their battle.
“When you lose, it’s in your mind. If you lost once, it’s in your mind. If you lost twice, it’s in your mind. From day one, I was always taught to be a winner. No matter what, be a winner,” said Mayweather.
The media conclave was held at the Nokia Theatre in downtown Los Angeles were about 700 media members were given credentials to be at the invitation-only news conference.
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