|Manny Pacquiao is to face DK Yoo in a six-round exhibition on Dec. 11 in Seoul. Ivan Saldajeno (file photo)|
MANILA—Former Sen. Manny Pacquiao refused to discuss the ongoing lawsuit filed against him in the United States by the head of Paradigm Sports Management (PSM).
“Let’s not talk about it,” the 43-year-old eight-division world champion said during a press conference Wednesday announcing his scheduled exhibition fight with Korean mixed martial artist DK Yoo.
Pacquiao was sued by PSM chief executive officer and founder Audie Attar before the Superior Court of California for alleged breach of contract.
The sports management firm is also seeking to recover the $3.3 million it claims it paid Pacquiao in advance for a fight PSM is eyeing for the boxer.
The boxing icon refused to talk about the lawsuit even before he formally retired from professional boxing last September last year to focus on his presidential bid, which he eventually lost.
A reliable source from the Paradigm’s elite circle said that the Korean promoter of the six-round exhibition charity boxing fight would be informed about the case—and the legal partnership that Pacquiao is reportedly bound to.
“They can proceed with that exhibition fight anywhere they like, but Paradigm will inform them about the pending case,” the source said. “Paradigm may also file a case against those involved in the activity. Whether it’s for charity or not, it will only worsen the situation.”
According to the source, Paradigm claimed that it holds exclusive rights to manage Pacquiao’s fight contracts—whether in boxing or mixed martial arts, exhibition or not—based on their signed contract in 2020.
The case could also hinder Pacquiao from fighting again in the US if he decides to come out of retirement for a better farewell fight. The eight-division world champion lost to Yordenis Ugas on Aug. 21 last year in what turned out to be his last pro bout.
“The promoter of that fight should talk with the Paradigm to avoid any future legal repercussions,” the source added.
The source also believes that Pacquiao would be guaranteed only a low purse in this exhibition fight—a far cry from his usual earnings from his previous fight contracts, particularly from Paradigm’s supposed $25 million offer last year.
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