Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Early fight odds favor Mayweather

MANILA, Philippines - The betting lines are open for Floyd Mayweather Jr. versus Manny Pacquiao even before negotiations for the richest fight in history.

Bob Arum of Top Rank, representing Pacquiao, and Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy, who has helped seal Mayweather’s previous fights, are just about to begin talks for the fight the whole world wants to see.

And yet, the betting lines are now open, and it should be the first time concerning a fight that may or may not happen. If it does, it should take place no sooner than June or July next year or even a little later than that.

But at the BetUs Sportsbook, the odds are out, and it’s Mayweather, the flamboyant and undefeated American who came out as the early favorite against the hard-hitting, Filipino pound-for-pound champion.

Mayweather is undefeated in 40 fights, his latest, against a smaller Juan Manuel Marquez, coming after a 21-month retirement. Pacquiao, on the other hand, has fought and beaten everyone over the last four years and eight months.

In the early bettings, Mayweather was tagged as a -165 favorite, meaning to win a hundred bucks you must shell out $165. Pacquiao is at +125, that a bet of $100 wins $125.

Except for his fight with Oscar dela Hoya last December, Pacquiao had been favored against his previous opponents, and that include Marco Antonio Barrera, Marquez, David Diaz, Ricky Hatton and Miguel Cotto.

Pacquiao went as high as being -350 against Cotto and settled in at -280 against the Puerto Rican’s -230 on the eve of the fight that ended with a masterful 12-round TKO for the 30-year-old Filipino southpaw.

The Mayweather versus Pacquiao is a fight that could break all existing records in boxing, and one that could generate more than $150 million in pay-per-view sales and give each boxer earnings of as high as $50 million each.

But it may or may not happen, depending on the negotiations, since both sides want a bigger piece of the cake. But as experts say, there’d be so much money on the table for the two camps to call it off.

“The money will be unprecedented so they should figure it out (how to make the deal),” said Emmanuel Steward.

And while the bets are on, Hatton, six months after his devastating second-round loss to Pacquiao, is putting his money on Mayweather even if he admitted that the ex-pound-for-pound king is a bore to watch.

“I think Mayweather would win because he’s just so good defensively and hard to hit. (But) Pacquiao gets better with every fight. I didn’t fancy him against Miguel Cotto earlier this month but he smashed him to bits. I was blown away,” Hatton told the UK press.

“If I had to put money on it I’d tip Mayweather though. He has the style and shuts up shop so you can’t nail him. Mayweather is so good he doesn’t let you get any punches off. If he makes Pacquiao miss he’ll take the sting out of him.

“But I’d rather watch Pacquiao though. Mayweather will go down as one of the all time greats but I wouldn’t get up at four o’clock in the morning to watch him. He bores the s*** out of me. He should have knocked Juan Manuel Marquez out in September but didn’t, it was safety first all the time,” he added.

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