By Matt Richardson
With 2009 barely two weeks old, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum is already making plans (and big fights) for the New Year. On Tuesday Arum was in New York to announce his February 21st double city pay-per-view featuring welterweight Miguel Cotto versus Michael Jennings and middleweight champ Kelly Pavlik against Marco Antonio Rubio. Also likely to be featured on that card is Top Rank fighter Joshua Clottey, defending his IBF welterweight title against Kermit Cintron.
On January 24th, meanwhile, Arum has Antonio Margarito up against Shane Mosley in an important welterweight match up. Regardless of the outcome of that fight Margarito will likely fight Cotto again in the second quarter of the year. “The chances are very, very good; June 14th, the night before the Puerto Rican day parade in the Garden,” Arum said at Tuesday’s press conference. If Cotto were to be upset by Jennings, however, that fight would not occur.
Arum, meanwhile is also trying to secure Manny Pacquiao’s next fight, which is likely to occur on May 2nd against junior welterweight champ Ricky Hatton at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. “We’re still finalizing it,” Arum said. “Pacquiao went back to the Philippines and now wants more money but we’ll handle that. I’ve been through that before,” he said. Asked if disputes between Top Rank and Hatton promoter Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy could be holding up the super fight, Arum said it wasn’t the case. “It’s not about Schaefer and it’s not about me. You can’t put yourself or your company at the forefront of these negotiations.”
In that vein, when asked about a fight between Top Rank pupil Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Oscar de la Hoya Arum noted that there has been a lot of talk out of Chavez’ camp but that “you haven’t heard a lot of talk from the Oscar people.”