Manny Pacquiao could be on the verge of retirement, although Bob Arum confirmed recently that a rematch with Jeff Horn, who defeated the former eight-division world champion by controversial unanimous decision in July, is still a possibility for 2018.
Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KO’s), 38, was slated to fight Horn in a rematch on Nov. 12 at Suncorp Stadium, but pulled out of the bout due to his senatorial duties in the Philippines. However, some speculated that “Pacman” just didn’t want to fight in Australia again, and was looking for a more favorable venue in his native country.
As FightNights.com previously reported, two-division world champion Terence Crawford is being considered as an opponent for Horn in the spring of 2018. However, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, Horn’s promoter, left the door open for a Pacquiao return, although he didn’t seem too optimistic.
“If Horn beats this kid [Corcoran], we could do the Pacquiao rematch in the first part of 2018 or go right to a [Horn] fight with Crawford,” Arum told ESPN. “Pacquiao might not fight again. Who knows?”
Corcoran (17-1, 7 KO’s), 26, of the United Kingdom, who is ranked No. 11 by the WBO and as low as 77th in other rankings, is fighting for his first world title. He is coming off a split decision victory over the previously undefeated Larry Ekundayo for the vacant WBO Inter-Continental welterweight title.
If Pacquiao returns in 2018, he will be 39 years old, and will soon hit 40 given his current rate of activity. He hasn’t scored a knockout since 2009, and he looks slower in each succeeding bout.