Manny Pacquiao’s next fight appears to be set. Rather than a rematch for the welterweight title against Timothy Bradley, Pacquiao has decided to face Mexican fighter Juan Manuel Marquez for the fourth time in their careers. The bout is set to take place on December 8th in Las Vegas, though there were previously rumors the fight would be held in Mexico City.
“It’s at the MGM,” Top Rank promoter Bob Arum said. “The eighth is for sure. Vegas is for sure.”
Pacquiao was deciding between Marquez and Bradley after his top choice Miguel Cotto declined the fight. Cotto has instead decided to fight one week earlier against Austin Trout for the junior middleweight title in New York City at Madison Square Garden.
An official announcement is expected to come this weekend but could come as early as Thursday.
Pacquiao and Marquez have faced off three times before with Pacquiao going 2-0-1. Each one of the bouts was highly contested and could have been scored for either fighter. In their most recent bout in November of 2011, many believed that Marquez was robbed of victory after the judges scored the bout in favor of the Filipino.
As soon as the fight is finalized, Arum will fly off to Los Angeles to begin promoting the fight with a press conference.
Out of all of the potential Pacquiao opponents, Marquez is the biggest fight and will draw the biggest pay per-view numbers. Unfortunately for fans, it is still not the fight they want to see. Despite coming off of a robbery loss the Bradley, fans are still very interested in a Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr. showdown that we can hopefully enjoy in 2013.