Manny Pacquiao signs a surprising deal to participate in RIZIN 15!
In a bizarre twist of events, WBA regular welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao, has signed a deal to feature on the 15th major event for the MMA federation.
Details of the deal have not been made public at this time. To be quite honest, fans are unsure if his involvement pertains to him actually fighting.
However, RIZIN President Nobuyuki Sakakibara states he will announce the details once he returns to Japan from the Philippines.
This of course is the same company boxing legend Floyd Mayweather Jr won his first MMA bout under. He defeated flyweight Tenshin Nasukawa on New Years Eve of 2018. The undefeated former five-division champion reportedly grabbed a $9 million dollar payday for an exhibition that lasted one round!
The Rematch Could Happen Down The Line…Maybe?!
Speculation of a potential Mayweather vs Pacquiao rematch has been around before the MMA bout took place. The two were involved in a confrontation in a Japanese lounge back in September 2018. After a video of the argument went viral, Mayweather mentioned the rematch would take place in December 2018 over social media.
When an announcement was made of Pacquiao facing Adrien Broner as a member of the PBC brand, opinions of a Mayweather rematch became even more popular. It was widely speculated that if the Filipino legend defeated Broner, the rematch would be his next bout.
That has since died down with talks of a possible match-up with Super WBA champion Keith Thurman toping the rumor mill. The two are believed to be close to agreement…then the news of a RIZIN deal surfaced.
In opinion, this can easily be seen as a power move to make a rematch with Mayweather down the line. If the company was willing to pay $9 million for a three round exhibition, think of what they are willing to pay to host a rematch of arguably the two most skilled fighters of this century!
In addition to joining RIZIN 15, it is rumored Pacquiao will also debut against Nasukawa. This may be a stretch as the event is scheduled for April 21, just two weeks away from the time this article is to be published.
Then again, you never know! It seems anything dealing with Mayweather or Pacquiao these days tends to be a surprise!
By: EJ Williams