Pacquiao vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in 2009
There’s so much about this that’s silly. First of all, NO it would not be the biggest fight of the year. There’s absolutely no way in frozen hockey rink hell that Pacquiao-Chavez is a bigger fight than Pacquiao-Hatton. Chavez is a mid-tier, mediocre fighter that gets by solely on his name. Mexican fans buy his crummy PPV fights because of what his father did. Period. He’s not any good. John Duddy would smoke him six ways from Sunday, and I’d bet on old Oscar de la Hoya to cream him pretty good, too. Size difference? It’s massive. Pacquiao is about 5’7″ and has fought up to 147 pounds. Chavez is six feet tall and fights at 154, though he did try to start his career at 130-135. He’s grown into his frame. He’s a solid 154-pound fighter in physical terms. He’s much, much bigger than Manny. I don’t think it’d matter though. These two could fight at 175 pounds and Pacquiao would beat the crap out of him. The fight won’t happen, of course. Many are speculating it’s Arum trying to bait Floyd Mayweather by not mentioning him as a potential opponent for Pacquiao, but I also think there’s a very strong chance that Manny-Floyd won’t happen no matter what. Arum and Mayweather are not friendly — it’s still a simmering anger between the two of them. They’ve never put it in the past like Arum did with Oscar in recent years. Bob probably sees no real advantage to him putting his top superstar in the ring with Mayweather and paying Floyd whatever ridiculous dollar figure he’d want to do it. He has his reasons. (Doesn’t mean I have to like it.)
There is John Duddy, there is Oscar de la Hoya if he continues to fight. And there is a third which is a little different because of the size difference but it would be the biggest fight of the year, with Julio Cesar Chavez versus Manny Pacquiao, Mexico versus the Philippines. -Says Bob Arum
Most likely scenario: 1. Pacquiao fights Hatton; if he wins, another big money fight with someone, or a smaller fight against Edwin Valero or somebody like that. 2. Chavez continues fighting the Matt Vandas and Luciano Cuellos of the world, struggling way too much with them for someone that’s supposed to be a star.