Boxer-turned-senator Manny Pacquiao says he has opened talks on fighting mixed martial arts star Conor McGregor in April, when he takes a break from the Philippine legislature. He has also said that his next bout could be in Malaysia, Dubai or Macau.
The Philippine boxer, who is treated like a national hero in his home country, stressed that no fight has been finalized and it would depend on his April scheduling.
He emphasized McGregor is just one of many possible opponents when he returns to the ring for the first time since his defeat to Jeff Horn.
“It depends who they can finalize as my opponent by April,” he said. “If we can negotiate it, I have no problem. It is okay with both of us.”
But Pacquiao added that there are other possible opponents, including Horn who took the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title in July, or American Keith Thurman, who holds the World Boxing Association (WBA) super welterweight title and the World Boxing Council (WBC) welterweight title.
Both Pacquiao and McGregor lost high-profile, Las Vegas fights to the unbeaten Floyd Mayweather in 2015 and 2017 respectively.
Both were extremely hyped bouts, with McGregor vs. Mayweather dubbed the “Fight of the Century.” That August fight was the mixed martial artist McGregor’s first foray into boxing.
Last month, Pacquiao suggested on social media that a match might be in the works. He posted a message to McGregor on Twitter and Instagram, saying: “Happy Thanksgiving! Stay fit my friend. #realboxingmatch #2018 @thenotoriousmma.”