MANILA, Philippines - Manny Pacquiao is certainly not going to the United States to fight in April.
“We’re not interested in the US for this fight,” said Pacquiao’s chief adviser, Mike Koncz, yesterday when asked for the latest on the Filipino superstar.
Koncz mentioned Singapore, Abu Dhabi or gambling haven Macau as the venue for Pacquiao’s next fight being set either April 13 or April 20. Previous reports also had Dubai in the mix.
Pacquiao’s adviser cited “tax reasons” as the reason why they’re skipping the US for this fight because the Filipino boxer won’t be taxed as much if he fights outside the US.
The mandatory suspension on Pacquiao by the Nevada State Athletic Commission following his devastating knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez last Dec. 8 could be another reason.
The NSAC said Pacquiao can’t fight in their territory until March 9 or 90 days after his loss to Marquez, and should have no contact with boxing until Feb. 7 or 60 days after the knockout.
But if he fights outside the US, the 34-year-old congressman can be up in the ring by the second or third week of April and train seven to eight weeks prior to the fight.
Pacquiao can train in Manila, Baguio or Cebu for his next fight. It means Freddie Roach will have to come over.
The last time Pacquiao fought outside the US was in July 2006 when he carried Mexican Oscar Larios through 12 rounds in a super-featherweight clash at the Araneta Coliseum.
Prior to that, Pacquiao fought Fahsan 3K Battery of Thailand in Taguig, Metro Manila in December 2004. Pacquiao had gone to the US to fight 23 times since 2001.
A lot of names have also been mentioned as Pacquiao’s next opponent, including Timothy Bradley, Brandon Rios, Roberto Guerrero, Vyacheslav Senchenko, Jessie Vargas and Humberto Sotto wherever he is.
Still, Koncz said their focus is on the venue of the fight.
“We haven’t started looking at the opponent until we find the venue,” Koncz told The STAR.
“But there’s no problem. We hope to finalize things this coming week,” he said.