At long last, pound-for-pound greats Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao will finally fight.
Yes, the fight that looms as one of the most anticipated in boxing history is finally on.
For more than five years sports fans have clamored for a summit meeting between the two best fighters in the world and after various failed negotiations — and a protracted and difficult effort to make the fight in recent months — they will get it on May 2 to unify their welterweight world titles at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
The showdown is a lock to be the richest in boxing history and will, barring a draw, settle the issue that has been debated for years: Who is the No. 1 fighter in boxing and who is the king of their era?
Mayweather made the announcement on Friday afternoon on a social media platform called Shots, of which he is an investor.
“I am glad my decision to meet with Manny and discuss making this fight happen helped get the deal done,” Mayweather said, referring to a chance January 27 meeting with Pacquiao at a Miami Heat game followed by a private discussion after the game.
“Giving the fans what they want to see is always my main focus. This will be the biggest event in the history of the sport.
“Boxing fans and sports fans around the world will witness greatness on May 2. I am the best ever, TBE, and this fight will be another opportunity to showcase my skills and do what I do best, which is win. Manny is going to try to do what 47 before him failed to do, but he won’t be successful. He will be number 48.”
Many involved expected the announcement to come on Thursday but Mayweather was upset because Top Rank, Pacquiao’s promoter, was leaking word of the impending announcement and Mayweather wanted it to be a surprise.