Top Rank boss Bob Arum outlined a four-fight plan for Manny Pacquiao this week as the Filipino Senator embarks on a world tour before hanging up his gloves with a Las Vegas farewell party at the end of this year.
Arum is currently tying up a deal for Pacquiao to defend his welterweight title against Jeff Horn in Australia, but then wants the ‘Pacman’ to feature in Russia or Asia during the summer and England in autumn, before a US return in November or December.
Terence Crawford is already pencilled in as the final opponent for Pacquiao, although the two mid-year spots are still up in the air for others to fight for. The likes of Kell Brook, Amir Khan and the winner of Danny Garcia v Keith Thurman could be considered, but judging by the first choice for this year, Arum may go under the radar in a bid to keep Pacquiao undefeated for the Crawford clash.
The one huge hurdle Arum faces getting over from his blueprint, though, is the fact that Pacquiao hasn’t fought four times in one year for sixteen years.
It was way back in 2001 when Pacquiao defeated Tetsutora Senrima and Wethya Sakmuangklang via knockouts on home soil before making his American/Las Vegas debut in June against Lehlo Ledwaba and finishing out the year with a draw opposite Agapito Sanchez in California.
Since then, Pacquiao rarely competes more than twice a year, leaving Arum’s masterplan looking a highly ambitious one, especially when the 38 year-old is already skipping the first three months of the year.
In all likeliness, Pacquiao will fight in April, July or August and then November or December before hanging up his gloves on the back of 70th pro bout.
A potential 62-6-2 record can be etched into history by the eight-weight world champion, provided Pacquiao remains undefeated during that time.