The injunction by Paradigm Sports Management may not have stopped Manny Pacquiao vs. Errol Spence Jr from happening, but injury has cancelled the welterweight title fight anyway.
It was announced on Tuesday that the IBF and WBC champion Spence has been forced off the August 21st PBC on FOX PPV with a retinal tear in his left eye. The Nevada Athletic Commission found the tear in its pre-fight medical exam, and Spence is set to undergo surgery later this week.
Usually this is grounds for the entire card to be cancelled, but Pacquiao will still be fighting next week. In Spence’s place is Yordenis Ugas (26-4, 12 KOs), who was originally scheduled to face Fabian Maidana in the co-main event. Ugas was perhaps unlucky to lose to then WBC champ Shawn Porter in 2019 and is on a three-fight winning streak against Omar Figueroa, Mike Dallas, and Abel Ramos.
The 35-year-old Cuban won bronze in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and is widely considered to be a top-10 welterweight if not on the fringes of the top-5. In terms of short notice replacements this is a high-quality opponent, albeit one with far less notoriety and success as Spence.
This is obviously a bummer to lose Spence so close out from fight night. He’s fought just once since a car crash put him out of action until last December, when he beat Danny Garcia by decision. Hopefully he has a full recovery from surgery and we’ll see him in the ring again soon.
These two tweets sum up today’s news:
I pray for a full and complete recovery for @ErrolSpenceJr.— Manny Pacquiao (@MannyPacquiao) August 10, 2021
I Came back from worse— Errol Spence (@ErrolSpenceJr) August 10, 2021