It had been announced that 8 division world champion Manny Pacquiao would be coming out of retirement on November 5th to take on WBO Welterweight Champion Jessie Vargas. I have yet to find anyone who wanted this fight, or is now even looking forward to watching it. However, one thing is for certain, it will not be taking place on HBO.
"Definitely it's not going to be on HBO. HBO had a contract and decided to pass because it was two weeks in front of their Ward-Kovalev fight." Top Rank CEO Bob Arum said to RingTv
There happens to be more to it though. HBO has also decided to drop Pacquiao's contract entirely. Meaning that if Manny wishes to continue fighting past the Vargas fight, that the bout can take place on any other network without HBO having first dibs. Manny Pacquiao's last fight that was not aired on HBO took place on Showtime in 2011 against Sugar Shane Mosley.
This is interesting due to the fact that every other major network in America that hosts boxing is home to the Premier Boxing Champions series, which is run by former Arum rival Al Haymon. The two have recently squashed their differences, but I personally think that it would be a long shot to see Manny Pacquiao fighting on NBC, FOX, or ESPN. Showtime is another option as well and is likely the favorite to land the Pacquiao vs Vargas fight. Even though Arum has a strained history with Showtime as well, they do not appear to have many other options.
"I haven't spoken to them (Showtime). But there will be no impediment to that. When I get back next week, Stephen Espinoza will be one of the guys I'm calling."