Bob Arum: Manny Pacquiao retiring after April fight

Boxing promoter Bob Arum says Manny Pacquiao’s final fight will be April 9.
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Boxing promoter Bob Arum says Manny Pacquiao’s final fight will be April 9.

The Filipino boxing legend will call it quits after his next bout, Arum told ESPN on Saturday. Pacquiao, who is also a congressman in his province in the Philippines, plans to run for a national senate seat in his native country after ending his career.

“I’m telling you what he told me last week at dinner in New York,” Arum said. “We talked very seriously and he said, ‘Bob, hopefully, by the middle of May I will have been elected senator in the Philippines and at that point I cannot engage in boxing because I need to focus on the senate and I have to be in attendance.’”

Arum told ESPN Pacquiao has some presidential aspirations and that ending his career now will allow him to jump-start his senatorial campaign, which would prepare him to take a bigger job should he choose to run.

“Manny told me this would be his last fight and I’m not sad about it because he’s going on to a political career which will require a lot of mental acuity, so you don’t want him to stay in boxing too long,” Arum said. “If he stays in boxing a little too long his mental faculties might be somewhat impaired.”

Pacquiao, 36, is the only boxer ever to win world titles in eight different weight classes. He holds a career record of 56–6–2, with 38 KOs. He lost to Floyd Mayweather by unanimous decision in his most recent fight, May 2, the richest in the history of the sport. Mayweather retired after defeating Andre Berto on Sept. 12.

Pacquiao had surgery on his injured right rotator cuff after losing to Mayweather, and Arum says he will resume training in December. No opponent has been set for what may be his final bout.

Jeremy Woo