After years of waiting we are now just 11 days away from what is set to be one of the biggest fights in the history of boxing.
Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao are deep in training ahead of the historic May 2nd bout in Las Vegas and the anticipation amongst boxing fans the world over is reaching fever pitch.
Not there yet
News today though has thrown cold water on the excitement. Bob Arum, promoter for Pacquiao, revealing there is still one significant hurdle to overcome - an issue that, until resolved, throws the whole event into doubt.
In a revelation that sums up just why it has taken until May 2015 to get Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in the ring together, Arum told ESPN that the physical contract allowing for the mega-fight to take place at the proposed MGM Grand venue is still unsigned.
"We agreed that we would all be signatories on the final contract and then they sent us a draft of the agreement and it excluded us," Bob Arum on contract situation.
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Fighting on paper
The boxing world thought the two sides had finally put the turmoil of negotiation behind them when it was announced term sheets had been signed back in March.
Arum though is adamant that the contract that arrived on his table on April 15 is very different to the one he agreed upon with Mayweather and MGM. The new document tantamount to fraud in his eyes.
"They don't want us to have any say,"said Arum. "So whether they came up with the deal between Mayweather and MGM before or after our agreement, they've committed fraud either way. That's what we're enmeshed in."
It is believed that, under the terms of the unsigned contract, Arum and Top Rank would sacrifice virtually any control of the MGM Grand event. Something they are clearly unwilling to do after giving up numerous concessions to Mayweather's camp throughout negotiations.
More worrying though for actual fans, and those hoping to be in attendance for the fight, is the hold up the lack of a signature is causing.
With under two weeks to go not a single ticket has been printed for Mayweather vs Pacquiao - either for ring side or MGM Hotel broadcasts - and this will be the case until the contract situation is solved.
For a fight this size that is a major issue. Fans, celebrities and high profile attendees will be caught up in the mess that will ensue with one MGM spokesperson describing the situation as a "nightmare."
There is hope that Arum will eventually put pen to paper by the end of this week. Leave it any later and those involved run the risk of blowing what should be an epic encounter.
What do you think boxing fans? Who is going to come out on top on May 2nd, Team Mayweather or Team Pacquiao? Have your say in the comments section below...
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