Questions have swirled regarding the boxing future of Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao since his loss to Floyd “Money” Mayweather in May, but promoter Bob Arum shed some light on the situation Tuesday by suggesting that 2016 may be Pacquiao’s swan song.
According to TMZ, the 83-year-old founder of Top Rank believes the 36-year-old Pac-Man will step away from the sport in 2016 upon being elected to the Philippines senate: “He’s gonna fight again next year but his goal is to become a senator in the Philippines, which he will be next year, and then to be president. I think Manny will retire once he’s elected to the senate of the Philippines which is next year … he’s gonna hang up the gloves.”
Pacquiao suffered a convincing unanimous-decision loss to Mayweather in what was billed as the fight of the century. After the defeat, it was revealed Pac-Man competed with a shoulder injury that was subsequently corrected by surgery.
The ailment was expected to keep Pacquiao out of action anywhere from nine to 12 months, but he claimed in August that his shoulder was no longer bothering him. He also expressed a desire to take on Mayweather in a rematch, per Joe Koizumi of FightNews.com: “I’d like to concentrate my efforts on working as a politician this year, and want to fight Mayweather in a rematch. I’ll be ready for that mentally and physically next year. I’ll show a better performance against him than in the first encounter.”
Regardless of whether Mayweather accepts Pac-Man’s challenge, the current indications are that Pacquiao will compete in his final fight at some point in 2016.
It will undoubtedly be a sad sight for boxing fans when one of the top-drawing stars of his era rides off into the sunset, but with a career record of 57-6-2 and titles across eight different weight classes, Pac-Man has little left to prove in the ring.