"I think sooner or later, the fight will happen, but, you know, Floyd is going to make it look like the fight's going to happen on his terms, when he wants it to happen. And we don't have a problem with that. We don't have to sit idle. Manny's making more money now than he ever dreamed he would make. Sure, if we fight Floyd, we can make twice as much, but we can't just sit around and do nothing either...If both fighters really want to make the fight, I believe it can be made because both fighters will compromise where each of them are happy and it'll happen," stated Michael Koncz, adviser of Manny Pacquiao, who spoke to FightHype.com about recent comments made by Floyd Mayweather regarding a potential showdown with his fellow pound-for-pound champion. You don't want to miss what else Koncz has to say as he discusses Manny Pacquiao's third bout with Juan Manuel Marquez, their stance regarding Mayweather's drug testing demands, and much more.
BT: Mike, obviously there's been some buzz lately now that Floyd Mayweather is back on the scene. There were two press conferences last week announcing his fight with Victor Ortiz, but ultimately, everyone wants to know about the fight with Manny Pacquiao.
MK: We have tried on a number of occassions to put this fight together and Floyd elects, for whatever reason, he's elected not to do the fight at this point in time. I mean, there was an offer of $50 million made, so it's very absurd that it would be alleged that I would be the one trying to sabotage this fight from happening. It's crazy. I feel very confident that it would be an entertaining fight and I feel confident that Manny would win, but I would hope that when this fight ever takes place, that it's a competitive fight and it would warrant a rematch because then both fighters stand to make $100-$120 million each in two fights. We can't do that obviously in one fight, but again, Floyd has chosen not to [fight].
BT: On a few occassions, Floyd made sure to let everyone know that he wants Manny next after this fight.
MK: For someone who knows boxing, one would expect that there would be no way that Floyd would have ever fought Manny before this Marquez fight because he's not stupid; he's not going to get into the ring without having a tune-up fight to fight somebody the caliber of Manny, so I don't even know why people speculated. How long has Floyd been out, 8 or 9 months? Something like that? There's no way...I don't like the guy as a human being, but he's definitely very intelligent when it comes to boxing. He's not going to step in the ring without first having a tune-up fight. Again, I reached out to Al Haymon after this last fight of ours, and I didn't push it because I knew; they're not going to step into the ring. Again, Floyd is not an idiot. He's very smart when it comes to boxing and there's no way he would've done that, but we did still reach out to him. There was an offer made. The Mandela people met with him [Jeff Mayweather] and they were lead to believe that we were going to have the fight made and then at the last 11th hour, they turned around and demanded the $100 million. That was the only money on the table was $100 million for both fighters. But I think sooner or later, the fight will happen, but, you know, Floyd is going to make it look like the fight's going to happen on his terms, when he wants it to happen. And we don't have a problem with that. We don't have to sit idle. Manny's making more money now than he ever dreamed he would make. Sure, if we fight Floyd, we can make twice as much, but we can't just sit around and do nothing either.
BT: Yeah, I definitely don't think you guys should wait around if a deal can't get done. I mean, the show must go on and Manny's got a lot of other responsibilities and things he wants to accomplish. When people here how much money is involved, they just assume both guys would be crazy for not making the fight, but they forget, for fighters, this sport is their job and there are more ways than one to make a living both inside and outside the ring.
MK: Now we have Top Rank handling the endorsements and that's proven to be very great for Manny. HP had sent me an email a week ago, and I forwarded it to Manny, saying that the response to the commercial for the TouchPad and their little phone, they've never had such success from any athlete with the response from the public as they've had with this one. They're so ecstatic about it. Matter of fact, their phone, I forget the name of it, it was only a 6-month deal, and we were very lucky to get that because we had the TouchPad deal and the night before we shot that, they contacted Lucia, who works for Top Rank, and said a basketball star was supposed to shoot it, but they were still in the playoffs and they needed the commercial shot, so they asked if we would do it. I told Manny and we negotiated it to a tremendous amount of money and that was only a 6-month deal. Even though it was a 6-month deal, that was the biggest endorsement he's ever gotten. And now, they're so happy with it. There was a renewal clause in there for substantially more money; without us having to do an additional photoshoot, they've informed us that they're going to exercise that. And then we also signed up a produce deal, it's called Pacquiao Produce. That was also done through Lucia. It's a California-based company, but all the produce is going to Mexico; various types of produce. That one is going to turn out to be like George Foreman's Lean Mean Grilling Machine because not only do we get paid an endorsement fee, we're also collecting a percentage of sales on each package that is sold. That's a long-term deal, so that's going to be a very good one. As a matter of fact, not only are we promoting something good and healthy, but we're also employing 300 Mexican farmers to produce this produce for us. So not only is Manny concerned about poverty and employment in his native Philippines, in particular his province of Sarangani where he's elected, but he's also helping other countries in poverty too, like the hispanics in Mexico.
BT: Manny is truly the people's champion.
MK: The other agreement we made is that a percentage of the gross sales of produce is going to be donated to needy countries and kids. We're building the image of the person that he really is, somebody that cares about other people and always shares with other people. Same thing with HP, we negotiated that X amount of product, HP is going to donate to charity, so obviously the charity is going to be Manny province, Sarangani, where we're going to put computers and stuff into the schools in his province. So again, it's not just about Manny. That's the kind of person he really is. That is my biggest fear and concern is his kindness and generosity is going to be his downfall some day, but that's who he is and that's what's made him so special, so we're trying to incorporate all of that into what we're doing right now.
BT: You know, honestly, I think I'm pretty much to the point where I don't really care anymore if the fight happens or not.
MK: Frankly, that's the way Manny and I feel. You know, we've made three attempts to do it and we got egg on our face all three attempts, so now we reach out periodically. If it happens, it happens; if it doesn't happen, it doesn't happen. That's the way Manny and I feel about the fight.
BT: Well like I said, Floyd has thrown down the gauntlet again and declared that Manny is next, but obviously he's still going to want the drug testing. Is Manny going to agree to all of those testst are is that still going to be an issue?
MK: I'm not really sure what tests he's referring to. I mean, there's the blood test, but if he's asking us to take a blood test on the day of the fight, that ain't gonna happen.
BT: Right, of course not. Well, he's obviously asking for the exact same type of tests that Victor Ortiz agreed to and Shane Mosley; I guess it's the random testing up until the weigh-in I think is what it is.
MK: Yeah, well we agreed to, in the past, random testing as long as when we get tested, he gets tested, up to 14 days. We're not going to test on the day of the fight. I'm not going to sit here and tell you yes, we'll agree to do tests that day or not, but What we've done in the past, we've agreed to give blood immediately after the fight, but then the problem is the commission told us that they won't do that because it's not sterile in the dressing rooms. Will we give blood 5 days, 7 days before the fight? You know, that's something I have to talk to Manny about, but we have nothing to hide. I certainly can tell you we will not give any type of blood on the day of the fight. Once again, it's Manny's belief, and I witnessed it myself at the Morales fight. The blood test got lost when Murad Muhammad was still around; something happened to it and we had to redo the blood test, I don't know, it was 2 or 3 days before the fight. Whether it's true or not, the same goes for Floyd, but whether it's true or not, if a person has that belief that needles and taking blood effects your strength and effects you physically, that's in your mind and your mind is stronger than your body. So if that belief is there, it's gonna effect you in a negative way. The same thing for Floyd, if he really believes Manny is on something, his mind is going to take over and it's going to control him. That's the same thing with Manny and needles. He hates needles. We're not making anything up. As I said, when we tried to make the fight the first time around, you know, look in the archives; we've always talked about needles and how he's afraid of needles, and we've always used the Morales fight as an example. That wasn't something that we just drummed up when the first negotiations came for Floyd. And again, how do I change his mind on that? That's something that's implanted in his mind and if he believes that so steadfast, as he does, it's going to effect him in a negative way. I'm not saying he's right or wrong, but I do know that the mind is stronger than the body and if that's your belief, you know, it could effect you, and it more likely will than not in a negative way. If both fighters really want to make the fight, I believe it can be made because both fighters will compromise where each of them are happy and it'll happen.
BT: Well, we'll see.
MK: Yeah, we'll see. He's gotta get by Ortiz. I hope he doesn't underestimate Ortiz, but I think they threw Ortiz to the lions. I think he's just too smart for Ortiz to prevail in the fight anyway.
[ CLICK HERE FOR PART 2 OF THIS INTERVIEW WITH MICHAEL KONCZ ]