By: Sean Crose
“PSM (Paradigm Sports Management) never intended to arrange a bout between Pacquiao and McGregor.” So reads a Manny Pacquiao complaint that was submitted to the state court of California on Friday. “PSM never secured any of the many endorsement deals it claimed were ‘lined up,’” the complaint – obtained by Yahoo – continues. “And PSM never intended to advance the full USD $4 million to Pacquiao.”
This all has to do, of course, with a legal battle between the legendary fighter and Paradigm. Pacquiao teamed with the sports management company last autumn. “Verified,” Pacquiao wrote on Instagram at the time. “Excited to have officially partnered with @paradigmsports. Grateful for the support of my family, team, and fans as I continue my professional boxing journey. Big things coming! Stay tuned!”
Matters have clearly fallen apart since then. There were whispers at the time that Pacquiao was getting himself one step closer to facing Conor McGregor in the ring by signing with Paradigm, who represents the UFC Star. According to Friday’s complaint, Pacquiao believed as much himself (McGregor has openly spoken to the media of his desire to box Pacquiao). Ultimately, however, it appears Paradigm wanted Pacquiao to face Mikey Garcia.
Pacquiao, meanwhile, signed to fight Errol Spence in a hugely anticipated welterweight title matchup set to go down in late August. Paradigm then went ahead and sued Pacqiuao. And now Pacquiao has responded with a cross complaint. According to Yahoo, Paradigm alleges Pacquiao has already received a large sum of money from the company, and hasn’t planned on returning it, despite the fact that he’s now fighting Spence.
Paradigm attorney Judd Burstein told Yahoo that Pacquiao “has $3.3 million and he thinks he’s entitled to keep it. It’s outrageous. He screwed us up completely with these financiers. But after all of that, he kept changing his mind and then he wanted $5 million regardless if he ever fought.” Pacquiao argues that he’s not gotten as much money as expected.
It appears the matter ultimately comes down to whether or not Paradigm had truly convinced Pacquiao they would arrange a fight with McGregor. Since Pacquiao’s signing with Paradign, McGregor has lost two in a row in the octagon to Dustin Poirier. “Pacquiao’s primary motivation for signing with PSM was their purported ability to set a very lucrative ‘mega-fight’ between Pacquiao and PSM’s star client, McGregor,” Pacquiao’s complaint reads. “But McGregor’s obligations to fight Poirier twice before ever getting a chance to fight Pacquiao would have made the arrangement far too risky for Pacquiao to agree to.”
Things such as this are never good news for fight fans, though matters may be worse than imagined. World Boxing News is reporting that Paradigm has filed an injunction to keep the Spence-Pacquiao bout from happening.