Despite the move of the World Boxing Council (WBC) to make Manny Pacquiao the No. 1 contender in the welterweight division, there is still no guarantee that the Filipino ring icon would fight unbeaten American Floyd Mayweather Jr. next year.
Pacquiao’s longtime Canadian adviser Mike Koncz said that all boxing sanctioning bodies—the WBC, the World Boxing Organization, the International Boxing Federation and the World Boxing Association—have no direct power to arrange a fight.
“We are very proud the WBC has recognized Manny’s achievement for making him the No. 1 contender in welterweight division,” Koncz told The Manila Times in a phone interview on Monday. “But at the end of the day, it will be promoters who will negotiate the fight.”
Mayweather (45-0 win-loss card with 26 knockouts) is the current WBC welterweight champion while Pacquiao (55-5-2 record with 38 knockouts) is currently the World Boxing Organization international welterweight champ.
“So far, there is no negotiation between us and the Mayweather camp. That’s the fight the people wanted but there’s no ongoing talks,” Koncz added.
In the past, the Pacquiao-Mayweather bout was cancelled because of drug testing and prize money issues.
Sanctioning boxing bodies, however, has the power to strip any champion of his title if he refused to fight a challenger especially if it’s a mandatory title defense match. The title will then be declared vacant.
WBC has recognized Pacquiao’s return after almost a year of absence, through his unanimous decision victory over Mexican-American Brandon “Bam-Bam” Rios on November 23 in Macau, China.
The Mexico City-based WBC ranks Pacquiao as No. 1 welterweight contender followed by Luis Abregu of Argentina and Amir Khan of England. Khan according to reports is being eyed as Mayweather’s next opponent in May.