Manny Pacquiao could return to boxing to face Conor Benn | Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

Manny Pacquiao could return to boxing to face Conor Benn.

Manny Pacquiao may return to active boxing at age 45, as he’s reportedly “in advanced talks” to face Conor Benn in a Saudi Arabia fight.

The two were seen together today at the Joshua vs Ngannou weigh-in event, and did a face off for cameras. Mike Coppinger of ESPN.com reports the pair met with Saudi officials for a 147 lb fight.

Pacquiao (62-8-2, 39 KO) is an all-time great fighter, obviously, but he is also 45 years old, and no matter what any promoter tells you, he is not “unquestionably” still a great fighter. He was last seen in a sanctioned bout in Aug. 2021, losing to Yordenis Ugas, and that’s his only fight since 2019, a full five years.

The 27-year-old Benn (23-0, 14 KO) has been out of the in-ring spotlight for nearly two years himself, following a massive drug testing scandal in late 2022 that scrapped a planned fight with Chris Eubank Jr and has resulted in major problems with Benn regaining a boxing license in the United Kingdom, his home country.

Benn has fought a pair of lower-level fights in the United States last September and just a month ago, and Matchroom have stuck by their man and searched hard for a way to get him a money fight.

Pacquiao has looked for a road back into active boxing himself for a while, doing exhibitions and keeping his name out there. The Benn idea is the first that has seemed close to coming to fruition, and you’d be smart to bet on it happening. It ticks every box for today’s “big event boxing” landscape, particularly in having no use for tending to the future of a sport that is increasingly reliant on extremely short-term grifts and a source of money that could be pulled from this world on a whim at any moment.

Read the full article here