Manny Pacquiao is joining RIZIN as an ambassador and won’t be taking part in any bouts in the immediate future, it has been confirmed.
First of all, a press conference was held on Tuesday due to a recent announcement. RIZIN outlined the role Pacquiao would play after the Filipino Senator signed a contract on Monday.
RIZIN boss Nobu Sakakibara had posted a picture of himself with the ‘Pacman’ just hours after Floyd Mayweather had ruled out a boxing comeback.
A statement by Mayweather said the American wouldn’t be fighting anytime soon. This came as a disappointment of those pining for a rematch.
Sakakibara had said: “I’m here in the Philippines (meeting with Manny Pacquiao).
“Following Floyd Mayweather (fighting Tenshin Nasukawa on New Year’s Eve) RIZIN.15 will do a new trick with this guy (Pacquiao).
“We will announce you soon after returning home. So please look forward to it!”
He then added: “RIZIN.15 will have this man involved in a way. We will be ready to announce as I get back to Japan!”
During today’s proceedings, it was revealed Pacquiao would be a guiding hand to Filipino fighters hoping to participate in the RIZIN brand.
This will begin at RIZIN 15 on April 21. Jiri Prochazka v Muhammed Lawal headlines for the RIZIN light heavyweight title.
Old Mayweather foe Tenshin Nasukawa also appears at the event. Mayweather battered the kickboxer in one round back on New Year’s Eve.
Consequently, Pacquiao’s advisory position means a potential Mayweather return isn’t completely out of the question.
It seems like the pair have consistently been linked to another battle. If it happens, it would be four years on from their record-breaking Pay-Per-View in Las Vegas.
The full bill was set as follows for RIZIN 15:
Jiri Prochazka v Muhammed Lawal
Kyoji Horiguchi v Ben Nguyen
Tenshin Nasukawa v Fritz Biagtan
Miuru Asakura v Luis Gustavo
Kai Asukara v Justin Scoggins
Seiichiro Ito v Manel Knape
Rena Kubota v Samantha Jean-Francois
Koji Takeda v Damien Brown
Roberto de Souza v Satoru Kitaoka
Karl Albrektsson v Christiano Frolich
Taiga Kawabe v Thalisson Ferreira
Kana Watanabe v Justyna Haba
Shinju Nozawa-Auclair vs. Saray Orozco