Pacquiao has been offered to fight for gold in the 2016 Rio Olympics by the International Boxing Associationto (widley known as AIBA).
When asked about his thoughts on his proposed participation in the Rio Olympics, Pacquiao said he will be pleased to join even if he doesn’t get paid.
Why not? For as long as it’s for the country!” Pacquiao told veteran writer Eddie Alinea.
“It’s a big honor to be invited to this landmark event that will give small countries like the Philippines chances of winning Olympic medals. Good for us, good for boxing. Good for sports in general,” Pacquiao said.
AIBA president Dr. Ching Kuo Wu is reportedly agreeable to offering Pacquiao a wild card ticket straight to the main draw without going through qualifications.
But Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum along with World Boxing Council president Mauricio Sulaiman is opposing the AIBA proposal.
Arum said Pacquiao won’t qualify under the rules because he has fought more than 15 paid fights, in violation of the maximum 15 paid fight rule.
If the rules are waived, Arum did not say if he would allow Pacquiao because the Filipino boxer is still under contract with his own Top Rank Promotions.
Mauricio on the other hand is strongly opposing the move to allow professional boxers to compete in the Olympics, citing safety concerns, especially for young boxers who will be allowed to fight without headgear.
AIBA has has talked with Pacquiao on several occasions but the 37-year-old Filipino boxer has yet to make his final decision on the matter.
Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP) executive director Ed Picson said professional boxers like Pacquiao may be endorsed by ABAP
“Yes, AIBA has announced it to media several times. Pros may be endorsed by national boxing associations such as ABAP,” said Picson in a text message to Rappler.com on Tuesday.
Pacquiao need not fight in the 2016 Rio Olympics if he is victorious against Bradley on Saturday night because a series of lucrative fights would likely come his way especially if he scores another convincing win in a post-Bradley fight.
Still, Pacquiao has to weigh his options with regards to his future plans based on the outcome of his fight against Bradley.