Apparel giant Under Armour says it is absolutely not in any conversation with trying to sign former eight-division world champion and Filipino ring icon Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao, despite rumors that he is close to inking a deal with the sportswear manufacturer.
Pacquiao was let go from his contract with Nike after the boxing legend’s controversial comments on gay marriage was recently made public by various news outlets.
“Under Armour is not in conversation with Manny Pacquiao,” a representative told TMZ Sports who reported the news.
Under Armour has risen as a key player in the sports apparel industry recently, featuring a line of compression wear technology that is best in class. The company also has a number of high-profile endorsers such as Muhammad Ali and NBA most valuable player Stephen Curry.
Rumors of Pacquiao signing with Under Armour began when Pacquiao was spotted sporting a pair of UA basketball shoes in a pick-up game in Manila, almost immediately after Pacquiao had been axed by Nike.
An online petition for Under Armour to sign Pacquiao was also created by fans who desired the partnership. Photoshopped advertisements also made their rounds on social media depicting Pacquiao donning Under Armour gear.
Pacquiao, 37, is on the tail end of an amazing career as a professional boxer and is currently campaigning to become a senator in his native Philippines. His career spans over a 20-year period which saw him climb from flyweight up to as high as super welterweight, winning world titles across eight different weight divisions.
His last bout against long-time rival Floyd “Money” Mayweather Jr. earned the Filipino over $100-million in gross revenue and shattered all financial records in the history of the sport.
Pacquiao (57-6-2, 38 KO’s) is scheduled to face American, Timothy “The Desert Storm” Bradley (33-1-1, 13 KO’s) on April 9 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada in what he insists will be his final bout before he hangs up his gloves. – By Carlos Cinco
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