So, who's excited for Mayweather vs. Pacquiao? The clash of modern boxing titans to end all clashes of modern boxing titans. At this point, I'd have to think just about everyone who follows combat sports is ready, and has been ready for years. So, of course, when the bout was finally announced back in February, the collective response was "Finally. Now let's just hope it stays together." Turns out it never really was quite together, at least not until today (maybe), April 22nd, just 10 days out from the actual event.
ESPN ran the story late Tuesday, detailing the problems still plaguing the biggest combat sports event in recent history. Apparently, key differences in language between the "term sheet" outlining the deal and the final contract itself. Most specifically the language giving Top Rank a seat at the table in all aspects of the fight promotion, alongside Mayweather Promotions was missing from the final deal that Mayweather put together with the event host MGM.
"We agreed that we would all be signatories on the final contract and then they sent us a draft of the agreement and it excluded us," said Arum, who promotes Pacquiao.
"They don't want us to have any say," Arum said. "So whether they came up with the deal between Mayweather and MGM before or after our agreement, they've committed fraud either way. That's what we're enmeshed in."
While it sounds like the contracts still aren't finalized, today, it does appear that all those problems have been worked out. Bob Arum spoke to Yahoo Sports to give an update on the contract situation and said, following a conference call between Top Rank and Mayweather Promotions brass, mediated by CBS Corporation president and CEO Leslie Moonves, that all issues have been solved:
"We resolved all of the issues and now we're waiting for the paperwork," Arum said. "I said on the call that if what we agreed upon is in the paperwork we receive, we will sign it and the tickets will be released."
Hopefully, once and for all, this is the final leg in getting this fight actually in the ring. It took years to get both sides to take the bout seriously, there's only days left now, to make sure the fight happens. Mayweather vs. Pacquiao takes place on May 2nd at the MGM Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. What few public tickets that will be made available are expected to go on sale once the contract has been finalized. Prices are expected to be between $1500 and $7500.