Pacquiao wants his belt back

Manny Pacquiao (left) fights Timothy Bradley during their WBO welterweight title fight at the MGM...

Manny Pacquiao (left) fights Timothy Bradley during their WBO welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev., June 9, 2012. (STEVE MARCUS/Reuters)

MURRAY GREIG, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:04 PM ET

EDMONTON - In the wake of the WBO’s conclusion that he’s still that sanctioning body’s world welterweight champion, Manny Pacquiao says he wants a rematch with Timothy Bradley, who was awarded a brutal split decision in their June 9 title fight.

Last week, Pacquiao told boxingscene.com he would prefer a second fight rather than have Bradley surrender the crown, “because people might think I just usurped it.”

After reviewing the tape, the five judges on the WBO’s panel unanimously scored the bout in Pacquiao’s favour: 117-111, 117-111, 118-110, 116-112 and 115-113.

Ringside in Las Vegas, judge Jerry Roth had it 115-113 for Pacquiao, while Duane Ford and C.J. Ross favoured Bradley by the same score.

Despite the WBO’s findings, the sanctioning body cannot overturn the decision rendered by the Nevada judges.

Meanwhile, Pacquiao (54-4-2) reportedly met with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum in Los Angeles on Tuesday before departing for a family vacation in France.

According to his lawyer, Franklin Gacal, discussions for the Filipino’s next opponent were to focus on unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr. (43-0), who’s currently serving a 90-day jail sentence for domestic violence.

Gacal told Philstar.com that talk of a Bradley rematch or a fourth fight with Juan Manuel Marquez in November is wide of the mark. “I think the fight with Floyd Mayweather should be on top of the agenda,” the lawyer said.

“It’s still the fight that has to be made. I think they should give the Mayweather fight another try. If nothing happens, and there’s nothing more to expect, only then should they consider fighting Bradley or Marquez next.”

Pacquiao, 33, reportedly wants a 45% split of the pot — expected to top $100 million — with Mayweather pocketing the same amount and the other 10% going to the winner.

Pacquiao’s share of the PPV revenue is thought to be the biggest obstacle in making what would be the most lucrative fight in boxing history. His bout with Bradley attracted only 900,000 PPV buys, while Pacquiao-Marquez III last year drew 1.4 million.

On a related note, in an interview with Fox News’ On The Record last Thursday, Arum said he supports the establishment of a federal commission to regulate boxing in the U.S. The initiative is spearheaded by Nevada Senators Harry Reid and former Republican presidential candidate John McCain of Arizona.

“First, I have to say that Sen. McCain and Sen. Reid have always supported boxing and have always loved boxing,” Arum said.

“Yes, I would be in favor of a federal boxing commission. My word of advice to Sen. McCain is, don’t over-regulate. We need a federal commission, but let’s not over-regulate.”

PASCAL GETS A SHOT

Undefeated International Boxing Federation light heavy-weight champion Tavoris Cloud (24-0, 19 KOs), of Tallahassee, Fla., has signed to defend his title against former World Boxing Council titleholder Jean Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KOs) on Aug. 11 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.

The co-feature on Showtime’s Championship Boxing doubleheader will feature budding Canadian KO artist Adonis Stevenson, (18-1, 15 KOs) of Montreal in a super middleweight bout.

The 30-year-old Cloud, a no-nonsense power puncher, will be making the fifth defence of the 175-pound title he won in a 12-round decision over Clinton Woods two years ago.

“I’m really looking forward to fighting Pascal,” Cloud said when the bout was announced last week.

“What I like about him is that he doesn’t fool around either. When I look for him, he will be there — and the same goes for me.

“Fans like to see leather thrown with bad intentions, and that’s what they’re going to get.”

Pascal, 29, currently ranked No. 2 by The Ring, is rated in the Top 10 by three of the four major sanctioning organizations. Since his first title fight in 2009, Pascal has defeated Chad Dawson (TKO in 2010), Adrian Diaconu twice and fought the legendary Bernard Hopkins to a controversial draw in December 2010.

In the second of back-to-back meetings with Hopkins last May, Pascal lost his title on a unanimous decision.

murray.greig@sunmedia.ca


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