I’m of the mindset that if you want to compete at the highest level of boxing and hold a world championship title, you need to defend the belt against the best available opposition.
Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao is 41 years old and currently holds the WBA welterweight title, and if he wants to continue in boxing he will need to fight the other champions in the division or give up the belt.
If Pacquiao doesn’t want to unify the title against the likes of WBO champion Terence Crawford or WBC/IBF champion Errol Spence Jr. he should vacate and let them fight for it.
I understand that Pacquiao has done amazing things in the sport, but to be fair even at his age we cannot give him a pass if he decides to take on UFC fighter Conor McGregor and make a defense of his title against an MMA fighter and not a top boxer.
When Floyd Mayweather Jr. fought McGregor he didn’t hold a title and it was done as a spectacle, I was okay with that and most people were as well because there was no title on the line. Floyd put in work and his legacy just like Pacquiao’s was already established.
If Pacquiao decides to fight McGregor he could get a pass as long as he tries to unify against Crawford or Spence.
Boxing is a prestigious sport and we can’t just let a guy with no boxing background like McGregor fight for a world title and given that privilege over some of these fighters who put in the work and busted their back through the Amateurs and pros to climb the ranks and earn a title shot with hard work and dedication.
It’s a slap in the face to these boxers who dedicated their lives and had to earn a shot at a belt the hard way only for a UFC fighter to land a title shot before them.
If Pacquiao wants to continue at the highest level of boxing he must do everything he can to fight undefeated champions Terence Crawford and Errol Spence Jr. or give a top challenger a shot.
We can’t just give him a pass because he is a legend in his 40s who fought tough fights, he has to be held to the same standard as the other champions who hold belts, either fight the best or give it up the belt.