On the eve of his departure for Europe and the Holy Land, boxing star Manny Pacquiao finally met with Bob Arum over dinner in Los Angeles on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) and discussed several options surrounding the Filipino's Nov. 10 ring return.
The Bulletin caught up with Arum and Pacquiao as they were about to call it a night and the 80-year-old Hall of Fame promoter said the boxer is expected to make his choice next month.
Pacquiao is going on a vacation with his wife Jinkee and their four kids and Arum said he won't be surprised if the 33-year-old boxer decides who to fight next after spending a few days in Israel, citing he might have an epiphany while on sacred ground.
Arum said Juan Manuel Marquez of Mexico, Miguel Cotto of Puerto Rico, Tim Brdaley and even Floyd Mayweather make up the list of candidates.
Pacquiao, who is coming off a controversial split decision loss to Bradley, kept his cards close to his chest when asked about hi preference, stressing that he hasn't made up his mind but is nevertheless raring to get back to the ring on Nov.
"Wala pa, wala pa," Pacquiao said after Arum handed over the phone to him. "Basta't ang sigurado ay lalaban ako sa Nov.
After the caller and Pacquiao exchanged a few pleasantries, Arum got on the phone again, adding that he is giving him enough time to Pacquiao has the contractual right to force Bradley to face him in a rematch but can also meet somebody other than the unbeaten 28-year-old American.
Mayweather is the most attractive fight out there for Pacquiao but Mayweather hasn't even completed half of a 90-day prison sentence, making him a long shot to be Pacquiao's foe.
Marquez is a wise alternative owing to the storied rivalry that he and Pacquiao have, while Cotto is also in the mix because he put up a gallant stand against Mayweather not to mention that he is also hot on the comeback trail.