LAS VEGAS - Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather each made their claims as the world's best pound-for-pound fighter on Saturday, but a big-money showdown to decide the issue will not happen any time soon.
Philippines southpaw Pacquiao knocked out British junior welterweight Ricky Hatton with a devastating left hand in the second round for his 10th triumph in a row and claimed a world title in a record-tying sixth weight class.
Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said: "Manny is the best fighter in the world. He is in his prime right now. Anyone in the world, he could beat them all."
Former undisputed welterweight champion Mayweather put himself atop that list a few hours earlier by announcing the end of his 17-month retirement and a comeback fight on July 18 against Mexico's Juan Manuel Marquez.
Mayweather abdicated the pound-to-pound throne now owned by Pacquiao.
"I'm very comfortable at 140 pounds. You could see it in my performance," Pacquiao said. "I want to stay there."
That's the weighty matter that might delay a showdown with Mayweather, who would not say what weight he will fight the smaller Marquez under.
Roach said Mayweather feared facing Pacquiao at a similar catch weight so (he) announced his fight before the Filipino star won to make himself the obvious top opponent for Mayweather.
"Mayweather, he just had to wait one day and he could have fought Manny."
Asked to predict how Pacquiao-Mayweather would end, Roach said he expected the fight to go the distance.
Roach also made it clear they would not make the leap for a chance to fight Mayweather at his prime weight if he would not step down to face Pacquiao at 140.
Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum said no decision about who Pacquiao faces next will be made until after Cotto's next fight in July, just one week ahead of Mayweather's return .
But Floyd Mayweather Snr, Mayweather's estranged father thinks Pacquiao-Mayweather will happen sooner than later. - AFP