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Bidding war for Pacquiao-Marquez III heats up

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MANILA, Philippines – Showtime and HBO are pulling out all stops to secure the broadcast rights to Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez’s bout on November 12.

Top Rank’s head honcho, Bob Arum, told that they are already getting the proposals from HBO and Showtime.

“There is a frenzy. It’s unbelievable,” Arum said. “They’re offering for the promotion an incredible amount of support.”

Arum said that they will review the two proposals, which are both very lucrative. He expects the proposals from HBO and Showtime to be worth $15 million, and could go even higher.

“We estimate that CBS (Showtime’s parent company), their support was worth about $10 million on the open market for the last fight (Pacquiao vs Shane Mosley). And both HBO and Showtime are way above that now.”

Pacquiao, the world’s number one pound-for-pound fighter, had earned the highest pay-per-view (PPV) numbers of his career in his fight against Mosley, with 1.4 million PPV buys.

Showtime had won the broadcast rights for Pacquiao-Mosley by involving their parent company, CBS, in the deal with Top Rank.

Now, HBO is determined to win the broadcast rights and will involve its own parent company, Time Warner, into the bidding war.

“We will have the HBO/Time Warner proposal first, and go to CBS/Showtime to get their proposal, which we will have next week,” said Arum.

“This will be the most incredible marketing plan and publicity event for any event in history,” he added.

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