Manny Pacquiao to fight Jesse Vargas in November comeback fight
By Ben Reynolds
Last Updated: 04/08/16 8:26am
Manny Pacquiao will fight WBO welterweight champion Jessie Vargas in his November comeback fight, according to his manager.
Pacquiao announced his retirement from the sport to concentrate on his political career after beating Timothy Bradley on April 9 and the 37-year-old was elected to the Philippine Senate in May.
But he announced last month that he intended to return to the ring, with November 5 slated for the veteran of 66 fights and winner of world or Ring magazine titles in a record eight weight divisions.
"Retirement doesn't suit Manny right now," Michael Koncz told the Los Angeles Times. "Boxing is in his blood. When he trains, it's like a pressure-release valve. You can see a dramatic difference in his mood... he's happy. It's amazing what training and fighting does for him."
The only question is where the fight will take place, with Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum looking at holding the fight in Las Vegas or Dubai.
He tweeted last week that he was talking to a group from the Middle East that wants to host Pacquiao (58-6-2), although American Vargas (27-1-0) said he was in talks with Pacquiao's camp to hold a fight at the Thomas & Mack Center arena in Vegas.
Koncz told the LA Times that he would travel with Arum to the Philippines next week to meet with Pacquiao and pick a site.
"That's the essence of the meeting," Koncz said. "Not choosing an opponent. That's already done."
Pacquiao's unanimous decision win over Bradley was his first fight in nearly a year after his tame loss to Floyd Mayweather. Vargas, 27, beat Sadam Ali in March to claim the WBO welterweight crown.
He has won 10 of his bouts via a knockout or stoppage, with his only defeat coming via a points loss to Bradley in June 2015.