Bob Arum contradicted a recent denial by respected manager Egis Klimas that a fight between Manny Pacquiao and Vasyl Lomachenko was off the table.
Pacquiao set his sights on facing Lomachenko when announcing his comeback plans for the spring, leading to Klimas issuing a firm ‘no’ to any encounter ever taking place.
Klimas labelled Pacquiao a has-been and basically stated Lomachenko was not in the business of beating up on old men (Pacquiao is 39 years old).
Now, on the back of those controversial Klimas comments, Arum is hopeful Pacquiao can face Lomachenko in the autumn, but only if the pound for pound star’s father and handler Anatoly is in agreement.
“Lomachenko will be having a fight that will probably be at 135 at the end of April,” Arum said to the Las Vegas Review Journal.
“Lomachenko’s father would then need to give him permission to fight Manny at 140 pounds in the fall, and that’s a fight we’ll hopefully might want to put in Las Vegas if a building is available.”
Fans called for the clash to be made as soon as Pacquiao pointed out his intentions and were highly disappointed when Klimas made the comments he did.
Despite money being no factor for Lomachenko, facing Pacquiao is seen as a natural progression at Top Rank and would represent a passing of the torch scenario.
Given his weight in the past, Pacquiao could probably still make 137 or 138 pounds, giving Lomachenko a level playing field as both will be forced to go up or down the same amount of weight.
Pacquiao has been linked to fighting the winner of Terence Crawford v Jeff Horn in the summer, although a battle with Lomachenko – in the Filipino Senator’s twilight years, is seen as a much more appealing attraction.