Manny Pacquiao riles Adrien Broner by indulging Floyd Mayweather rematch talk ahead of welterweight bout

Sports Staff

Manny Pacquiao will defend his WBA welterweight title against Adrien Broner in January – but the Filipino superstar already has his eye on a rematch with Floyd Mayweather.

The two men held a news conference to confirm the scheduling of the fight, set for 19 January in Las Vegas, only for Pacquiao to rile Broner by discussing the prospect of facing Mayweather again.

“We talk and, you know, he said he want to come out of retirement to fight me and to challenge me but I told him: ‘I got the belt and you have to challenge me and come out from your retirement’,” the Filipino said of a much-publicised meeting with Mayweather at a music festival in Tokyo.

“And I decided that... I said that, because in that situation he [was] trying to bully me or whatever. Floyd, if he comes out of retirement, we will see after this fight.

“But we cannot underestimate Adrien Broner, we cannot underestimate this fight. I have to get through this fight first before we talk about the rematch with Floyd Mayweather.”

Broner responded: “He ain’t fighting Floyd, he’s fighting me. I’m gonna beat your ass, you worry about Floyd, he’s already beat you brother.

“I’m really thankful. There were a lot of people who wanted this fight and God blessed me to get it. I guess I am just the chosen one. He’s a future hall-of-famer. It’s going to be a helluva fight.

Mayweather defeated Pacquiao by unanimous decision when they fought in 2015 (Getty)

“All the things he’s done in this game is unbelievable. I have only got a chance y’all could dream of, I don’t even know how I’m feeling right now. It means a lot to me. A win, I turn a legend overnight.”

Broner (33-3-1), who was once considered by some to be the heir apparent to pound-for-pound king Mayweather, is far from intimidated by Pacquiao and is fully aware that the southpaw can go down.

“He's been knocked out three times,” the American added. “We know he can go out and go to sleep. He don't need no NyQuil for that. We know he can go to sleep and I got the power to do it.”

There has been speculation about a rematch ever since Mayweather scored a unanimous decision over Pacquiao, who later said he was hampered by a right shoulder injury, in a 2015 bout that was dubbed “The Fight of the Century” but never lived up to its billing.

Mayweather, 41, retired in 2017 with a 50-0 record and said on Instagram in September that a rematch of the much-hyped 2015 fight would take place this year.

He has since agreed to face Japanese kickboxing sensation Tenshin Nasukawa in Saitama on New Year’s Eve, though the bout is classed as a nine-minute exhibition with no kicking allowed and the outcome will not affect his professional record.

Pacquiao (60-7-2), who turns 40 in December, showed a return to form in July when he stunned defending champion Lucas Matthysse with a seventh-round knockout in Kuala Lumpur to claim the WBA welterweight title.