Roach: Crawford rejected Pacquiao fight

In a really surprising bit of news, Manny Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach is saying that unbeaten WBO 140lb champion Terence Crawford (27-0, 19 KOs) turned down a fight against Manny Pacquiao (57-6-2, 38 KOs) for April 9th. Roach says Crawford said no to a fight against Pacquiao, and that Top Rank promoter Bob Arum said they wouldn’t try and get Crawford to take the fight with Pacquiao yet.

Pacquiao said last week that he plans on fighting for the last time against WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley (33-1-1, 13 KOs) in their fight on April 9th on HBO pay-per-view from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

If Arum believes there’s still time to match Pacquiao against Crawford at a later date, then there is a chance that Arum will be able to convince Pacquiao to resume his boxing career long enough to make that fight happen. However, Pacquiao is saying he wants to retire so that he can focus on his political career in the Philippines.

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“I think it’s a good fight for him [Pacquiao]. Hopefully, we’ll get someone [Mayweather] to come out of retirement after that,” Roach told Fighthype. Crawford said no. Bob [Arum] said they won’t try Crawford yet. Crawford is too young for Manny. Crawford may be a future superstar, but he’s not that far yet. They’re still building him. Crawford may be someone down the line, but I don’t feel he’s ready for Manny yet,” Roach said.
So either Crawford turned down the Pacquiao or Arum if Roach is to be believed. It’s one of those two things.

Initially we heard that Pacquiao was the one that made the decision to select Bradley rather than Crawford or Amir Khan. Last week it was reported that Pacquiao was saying that it was Arum who made the selection of Bradley, and that Pacquiao said he didn’t care who he fought. Roach is saying that’s it both Crawford and Arum who turned down the Pacquiao fight. It’s pretty incredible stuff.

Crawford is fighting Henry Lundy (26-5-1, 13 KOs) next in a defense of his WBO 140lb title on February 27 at Madison Square Garden in New York. I would venture to guess that Crawford is making less for that fight than he’d make for a fight against Pacquiao. Unless money is no longer important for Crawford, it’s unbelievable that he’s fighting Lundy rather than Pacquiao if the choice was really up to him and not Arum.

Bradley is considered by many fans to be an easier fight for Pacquiao than Crawford. It’s thought that Pacquiao selected Bradley because he wanted to end up pro career with a victory rather than a loss.