Top trainer Freddie Roach believes a knockout win for Manny Pacquiao could lead to return with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2017.
Roach, speaking to On the Ropes Radio, also backed Pacquiao to carry on fighting into 2018 after rumours circulated the Filipino Senator could stand down next year due to his political commitments.
“Mayweather did stop by my gym a couple of months ago twice, just hanging around, just wanting to watch the boxing. I think he’s fishing for a rematch with Pacquiao and hopefully that’s what will happen,” Roach told host Jenna J.
“Being impressive in knocking out Jessie Vargas I think will guarantee us this fight. If Mayweather thinks Jessie Vargas can knock out my guy, he’s wrong, but we will see, I mean he’s being trained by an amateur and that’s all I have to say about him.”
Asked directly to comment on whether he thinks Pacquiao will call it a day soon, Roach replied: “No I don’t, I could see Manny Pacquiao fighting for a couple more years.
“The way he trains and his dedication, it hasn’t changed, he hasn’t lost a step yet. Same speed, same power, Manny Pacquiao is the hardest worker I ever seen and he still is,” he added.
Mayweather v Pacquiao II would never generate the substantial sums the first fight did in May 2015, although there are still those who believe the fight needs to happen again to fully put the rivalry to bed once and for all.