IT was a big gamble taken by Manny Pacquiao and he paid dearly for it.
With Pacquiao's supposed investors unable to come up with any money, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum declared as 'dead' the welterweight title fight between the Filipino ring hero and Amir Khan supposedly scheduled on May 21 at the United Arab Emirates.
The camp of Pacquiao was in talks with a group of investors in the UAE which offered to come up with a whopping $38 million for the 38-year-old boxing icon to defend his WBO title belt against his former sparring partner in the Persian Gulf.
As it turned out - and as Arum expected - there was really no money on the table.
"There's no money (in the UAE). It's always a pie in the sky," Arum said in an interview with Boxingscene on Wednesday (Manila time).
"But he (Manny) said he wants to roll the dice, and OK, so I know enough not to argue."
In the end, Arum said he proved to be right.
“I mean how many times do I tell a guy, ‘It ain’t gonna happen, it ain’t gonna happen.’ And he believes that it will and even if he’s not sure, he’s willing to roll the dice,” Arum said.
The veteran promoter shared he offered another proposal to the boxing legend, which he relayed to Pacquiao long-time adviser Michael Koncz
According to Arum, Koncz consented to the offer, which will have the Pacman returning to the ring either in June or July.
Other than that, the Top Rank big boss would rather have his cards close to his chest.
“I’m not gonna say anything further about it, because I want Manny to see it and either reject it or accept it before I talk to the press about it,” said Arum.
The shelved 12-round fight came in the heels of Pacquiao’s earlier decision to ditch a title defense against Australian Jeff Horn, which Arum arranged and reached an agreement with Horn’s handlers Duco Events.