Top Rank Promotion boss Bob Arum believes that newly elected Senator and Filipino ring icon Manny Pacquiao would not accept the offer to fight in the Rio Olympics in August.
“I don’t think he [Pacquiao] will accept the offer to fight in the Olympics because he knows it is not very appropriate for a professional fighter to fight a 17-year-old amateur kid,” Arum told The Manila Times in an overseas call on Wednesday. “He will come out with a decision soon.”
Pacquiao has until May 27 to accept or decline the offer according to the deadline set by the Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP).
Arum is telling boxers in his stable not to participate in the Olympics among them are Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire Jr., Timothy Bradley, Terrence Crawford, Viktor Postol, Vasyl Lomachenko and Ray Beltran.
“I’m telling all my other fighters as well not to join in the Olympics because it is not the proper thing to do. They should leave everything to the amateurs. It is very risky and dangerous. I’m confident Manny will not go for it. He already accomplished a lot of things for his country.”
ABAP, in a statement released by its president Ricky Vargas announced that it would respect the decision of Pacquiao, “Senator Pacquiao has already given so much pride to the Filipino and our country. We, as a people, are grateful. Just his presence watching our boxers fight in the Rio Olympics is already a great honor and an inspiration to our boxers.”
The Amateur International Boxing Association will convene in a General Assembly in Switzerland on June 1 to amend its by-laws formally allowing professional boxers to compete in the Olympics.