Say it ain't so.
Top Rank's Bob Arum, who promotes Pacquiao, told ESPN that he wasn't signing the contract that he received a draft of on April 15 because it wasn't what he agreed, when the term sheet was signed in February.
"We agreed that we would all be signatories on the final contract and then they sent us a draft of the agreement and it excluded us," Arum told ESPN.
If that holds up, Top Rank wouldn't have any decision-making power on fight night—including music, video content and in-arena production.
"They don't want us to have any say," Arum said. "So whether they came up with the deal between Mayweather and MGM before or after our agreement, they've committed fraud either way. That's what we're enmeshed in. It's one of the things I was most concerned about."
Although Arum is hopeful the contract will be signed, Leonard Ellerbee, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, just thinks Top Rank is expressing sour grapes about the original terms.
"The bottom line is that Bob isn't willing to live with the agreement signed a couple months ago, which doesn't allow him to be in control," Ellerbe told ESPN. "The only conspiracy, in my opinion, exists with him trying to conspire with his lawyers to change the terms of the agreement. I assure you that nothing underhanded is going on and the reference to this back alley stuff is ridiculous."
BET Sports News - Get the latest news and information about African-Americans in sports including weekly recaps, celebrity news and photos of your favorite Black athletes. Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
(Photo: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)