Thursday, 30 June 2011

Mayweather: After Ortiz, Pacquiao could be next

Posted by chardyboy on Thursday, June 30, 2011 0 comments

source: Agence France-Presse

NEW YORK — Unbeaten US fighter Floyd Mayweather will end a 16-month layoff against southpaw Victor Ortiz in September but still hopes to give fans a long-sought showdown with Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao.

Mayweather, 41-0 with 25 knockouts, will face World Boxing Council welterweight champion Victor Ortiz, 29-2-2 with 22 knockouts, on September 17 at Las Vegas with an eye toward another southpaw, Pacquiao, after that.

"After this fight, if I'm able to negotiate a Pacquiao fight, it could happen," Mayweather said. "(Ortiz) is a southpaw. That could lead to the Pacquiao fight. If it does or it doesn't, I'm not going to stop fighting."

Most of the fights on Mayweather's agenda are legal ones. He faces three court cases, including charges from an incident with an ex-girlfriend that could bring up to 34 years in prison, plus a defamation lawsuit from Pacquiao.

Asked how that federal lawsuit could affect negotiations for a Pacquiao fight, Mayweather said, "I'm not sure at all."

"You go through ups and downs in life. If that's how he feels, things happen. If he wants to go to court for defamation of character, that's up to him."

Pacquiao argues that his reputation was damaged when Mayweather accused him of being a dope cheat in his push to have "Pac-Man" take blood tests close to the date of a fight, something the Filipino star has steadfastly refused but something that is also not required by any US boxing oversight group.

"Hopefully Manny Pacquiao steps up to the plate and takes the test so we can fight," Mayweather said. "I'm waiting for the fight to happen. I'm taking one step at a time."

Ortiz and Mayweather will be undergo extra blood and urine tests beyond usual levels before their fight. Mayweather had similar rules in place before his most recent fight, a victory over Shane Mosley in May of last year.

"I've been missing the sport," Mayweather said. "I'm happy to be back performing for the fans."

Mayweather said he is trying to shrug off the court cases to focus on fighting Ortiz and that because he is a fighter, he might be seen as guilty in incidents involving physical contact before all the facts are given to a jury.

"They are already saying I'm guilty with no photos or pictures of anything," Mayweather said. "I need to see some pictures and see some proof of what I have done. All of this is just hearsay.

"All I need to do is go out there and stay focused and focus on what is in that squared circle."

Mayweather, who said he has played basketball but not worked out in the ring recently, put himself in the champion's shoes with his unbeaten record although it will be only Ortiz who owns a title when they climb into the ring.

"He's trying to dethrone me," Mayweather said. "My job is to go out there and fight like I always do."


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