Skip to content
Home » Why was Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao missing 154 titles?

Why was Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao missing 154 titles?

  • by
  • 4 min read

World Boxing News explains why Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao didn’t take place for championships in two weight classes.

When Mayweather finally fought career rival Pacquiao in Las Vegas, the former pound-for-pound number was king in a pair of divisions.

Therefore, why didn’t the ‘Money’ man put both division title belts on the line against the ‘Pacman?’

WBN decided to look at what happened around that time. Also, what was the view of the relevant sanctioning bodies?

There was plenty to sort out in the months before the multi-million-dollar Pay-Per-View bout.

Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao

Mayweather was WBC/WBA super-welterweight champion following his victory over Canelo Alvarez in 2013.

Added to that,  Floyd was also WBC and WBA welterweight ruler. This scenario was thanks to wins over Victor Ortiz and Marcos Maidana.

It represented a conundrum for those eyeing a hand in the most lucrative fight of all time.

Speaking to the WBA President weeks before the clash, here is what Gilberto Mendoza had to say.

“The WBA is open to a proposal but hasn’t received any request from Floyd Mayweather or his team,” he explained to WBN.

“Mayweather v Pacquiao could be the best event that has ever happened to (the sport of) boxing.”


Obviously, Mendoza didn’t want to miss out and be on the outside looking in, as the WBO and WBC could not agree on such a move.

The WBO strap had Top Rank boxing star Pacquiao. And although the WBA and WBC were both on board with their titles being involved in both divisions, Paco Valcarcel gave it a firm thumbs down.

According to the WBO Rules, no fighter can hold the WBO championship in one division and another organization trinket in a second.

It was then decided that the WBA would put their ‘super’ title into the fight at the lower limit so all three could stay involved.

Even though he possessed those two-weight belts, Mayweather was prohibited from placing all on the line.

We all know the outcome. Mayweather won at a canter. He, therefore, became a five-belt, two-division conqueror all at once.

Sanction fees

But not wanting to pay the WBO fee due to their ruling on the initial situation, the 43-year-old relinquished the strap at the earliest opportunity.

Still holding the WBC/WBA at 147 and 154, it was up to both Presidents, Mendoza and Mauricio Sulaiman, to decide what would happen next.

Mayweather had a firm grip on the sport at the time. Being the best around gave him unrivaled powers.

Asked by WBN after the fight if any of the remaining titles would be vacated, Sulaiman said that was up to Mayweather.

“We do not have any mandatories at welterweight or super welterweight right now,” Sulaiman explained to WBN. “We provided every opportunity for Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao to be made.

“So, at this time, we are going to discuss the future of Mayweather. We will assess the situation during the WBC Convention in China in November.

“Both divisions will be ruled on to clearly understand what Mayweather is going to do and what will happen.”

Mayweather’s belts

Facing Andre Berto in the final contest of his six-fight deal with Showtime, Mayweather refused to give up any of his status.

Defending the WBC/WBA welterweight versions, Mayweather kept the super-welterweight belts as a backup.

Even when Berto was beaten, and it looked as though Mayweather was 49-0 and out, the WBC/WBA were compliant with the TMT boss doing his bidding.

It wasn’t until January that the WBC acted in delay. They allowed Danny Garcia to fight Robert Guerrero for the vacant strap.

Despite this movement, their 154 version didn’t have another fighter amazingly until May 2016.

Placing Mayweather as ‘Champion in Recess’ for both divisions, Jermell Charlo beat John Jackson for the championship.

As for the WBA, the ‘super’ belt at 154 was dormant until January 2017. Erislandy Lara eventually won the title vs Yuri Foreman.

Two months later, Keith Thurman won the ‘super’ belt in an awaited unification with Garcia.

Mayweather would go on to defeat Pacquiao. However, we never got a promised rematch.

WBN Editor Phil Jay has over ten years of boxing news experience. Follow WBN on Facebook @officialworldboxingnews, Instagram, and Twitter @worldboxingnews.