BRASH-TALKING Mikey Garcia is willing to bet $1 million (roughly P48.5 million) that he could beat Manny Pacquiao in the event they face each other atop the ring.
“My whole purse? No, but I will bet some money, I told you. I’d probably bet a million on it,” Garcia told boxing podcaster Elie Serbach in a recent interview posted over the weekend on the YouTube account ESNews.
“I’ve said it before. I never said my whole purse. I’m not that stupid. What if I hurt my hand or if I fall or something or something stupid like that? You never know. But if I’m getting a big purse, and I expect to get a good purse, I’m down to at least one million bucks,” Garcia said.
After pursuing the Pinoy ring icon for several years, Garcia announced last week in an interview with British post-fight announcer and ESPN reporter Jo Ankiel that his handlers were close to sealing a fight with Pacquiao sometime in May.
Like Pacquiao standing at 5-foot-6, Garcia, 33, sports a record of 40 wins, 30 by knockout, against a single loss while Pacquiao, 42, has 62 victories, spiked by 39 KOs, against seven defeats and two draws.
The American brawler last fought on Feb. 29, 2021, beating Jessie Vargas, one of Pacquiao’s earlier victims, by unanimous decision at the Ford Center in San Francisco for the lightly-regarded World Boxing Council diamond welterweight strap.
Pacquiao hasn’t fought for over a year since subduing erstwhile unbeaten Keith Thurman to grab the World Boxing Association super welterweight crown in a split decision victory last July 20, 2019 at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas.
This inactivity prompted the Puerto Rico-based WBA to strip the fighting lawmaker of his crown, declaring him as a “champion in recess” while awarding top-ranked Cuban Yordenis Ugas with the belt.
Pacquiao is back training in his hometown of General Santos City, a fact confirmed by Kenneth Duremdes, commissioner of the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League, who visited him last week before coming over to Manila.
“Nag-simula ng training si boss (Pacquiao) kasama ni Nonoy Neri,” Duremdes bared yesterday during the Philippine Sportswriters Association virtual forum of the MPBL’s owner and chief executive officer.
“It’s not official (yet) but his (Pacquiao’s) team and himself; they like the fight, it makes sense, and it’s the best fight that I can also get,” Garcia said. “If he’s on board and I’m on board, we should just get everything else straightened out. I hope to get it, man.”