Boxing legend Manny Pacquiao has confirmed that he intends to fight UFC superstar Conor McGregor in the new year.
Last week, McGregor made headlines by announcing that he intends to fight Pacquiao in the Middle East before the year is out.
Anyway all water under the bridge who gives a fook.
I’m boxing Manny Pacquiao next in the Middle East.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) September 25, 2020
“I’m boxing Manny Pacquiao next in the Middle East,” McGregor wrote.
Not long after McGregor shared this plan, Jayke Johnson, an aide for Pacquiao, confirmed the bout is in fact in the works, but claimed it will happen in 2021 rather than later this year. He also added that Pacquiao, a senator in the Philippines, will donate a large portion of his purse to COVID-19 relief efforts.
Manny Pacquiao intends to fight Conor McGregor for a good cause 🇵🇭 pic.twitter.com/Prkjy4djvC
— ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) September 26, 2020
“For the sake of all the Filipino Covid-19 victims, Senator Manny Pacquiao will be fighting UFC superstar Conor McGregor next year,” Johnson said in a statement (via ESPN Ringside). “The huge portion of his earnings will proceed to those who are affected nationwide by the pandemic.”
McGregor and Pacquiao are both managed by Paradigm Sports Management, one of the biggest agencies in combat sports, which will seemingly make this fight much easier to put together. However, McGregor is under contract with the UFC, and the promotion’s President Dana White doesn’t seem to know much about a potential Pacquiao boxing match, which is not a great sign.
As far as White is concerned, McGregor is retired, as per the announcement the Irishman made on Twitter in June.
“I have no idea,” White said at the UFC 253 post-fight press conference. “Listen, you guys have been asking me about Conor McGregor forever. Did you see Conor McGregor’s tweet? The retirement tweet? I’m retired, birthday cake, retired.”
Do you believe we’ll see Conor McGregor and Manny Pacquiao box in the new year?