But the 35-year-old eight-division champion made an assurance that he will prioritize professional boxing.
“They really wanted me to avoid PBA and focus more on my upcoming fight against Algieri, but I can manage both [boxing and basketball]. Nothing to worry,” Pacquiao told the Manila Times in an interview. “Good time management is the key and I have that.”
Top Rank Promotion chief Bob Arum and American trainer Freddie Roach are asking Pacquiao to focus on his upcoming title fight on November 22 against unknown American WBO junior welterweight titleholder Chris Algieri rather than giving enough time to basketball.
The PBA 40th season begins some time in October that will coincide with his sparring and training session for his fight against Algieri (20-0 win-loss log with eight knockouts). Pacquiao will fight the New York native at the Cotai Arena in Venetian Hotel in Macau, China.
“I will prioritize boxing of course over basketball and other things. I also won’t retire just yet. I want the people to be happier as long as I fight. No retirement plan yet and not in my mind,” added Pacquiao.
Pacquiao (56-5-2 win-loss-draw card with 38 knockouts) clarified also that he only bought a share in the Asia’s largest mixed martial arts promotion One Fighting Championship last week but no any plans of becoming a mixed martial artist.
The popularity of MMA is getting bigger not only in Asia but also around the world that’s why I decided to buy a share in the One FC. It has the possibility to unseat boxing as popular sports,” he explained.
“In terms of fighting in One FC as an MMA fighter, well I don’t think so. It can’t be.”
One FC did not disclose how much stakes he bought.