It's the fight that we just can't get away from. Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao are extremely unlikely to ever step in the ring against each other, and if they do it'll almost certainly be well after any period where both men are near their "peak abilities."
But, Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports said today that he was given a copy of an 8 page bout agreement from the end of 2009 which would have ended with a March 13, 2010 superfight:
A contract sent on Dec. 11, 2009, by Golden Boy Promotions on behalf of Mayweather to Top Rank on behalf of Pacquiao proposed a 50-50 financial split between the sides for a fight that would have been held March 13, 2010.
The eight-page agreement is so detailed that it indicates which of the two fighters would step onto the scale first at the weigh-in (Pacquiao), who would walk to the ring first (Pacquiao), who would be introduced first (Mayweather) and who had first choice of the locker room (Mayweather).
It detailed that the bout would have been on HBO Pay-Per-View at a cost of $59.95. Billing was to be "Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, presented by Top Rank, Golden Boy Promotions, Mayweather Promotions and M-P Promotions in association with [approved sponsors and the site]."
Pacquiao's side declined the 2009 contract offer because Pacquiao objected to Mayweather's request for the drug testing. Though Pacquiao has subsequently agreed to Mayweather's demands for random blood and urine testing, the sides have not been able to reach agreement on a deal.
Many more details can be found in Kevin's piece at Yahoo.
Unsurprisingly, Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy claims to never remember sending a contract that agreed to a 50/50 split. Iole kind of killed that though:
However, in a contract obtained by Yahoo! Sports, paragraph 11 under the section entitled Net Profits reads: "Net Profits shall be allocated 50/50 between GBP and TR." The contract goes on to say that net profits would include a split of "all gross revenues."
The fact that we can't get away from pretending this fight is still going to happen led to my writing a long piece about why I'm hoping Tim Bradley beats Manny Pacquiao next Saturday to blow the whole damn thing up.
Regardless, if Manny wins, the media who otherwise don't follow boxing at all will once again pretend that the fight will happen because it "has to" while ignoring the reality of the entire history between everyone else involved.