A wellspring of outside-the-ring sparring between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao reached a crescendo Monday with Pacquiao citing Bible verse while saying he was unaffected by the pound-for-pound king’s barbs.
“I’m not angry at him,” Pacquiao said in a TV interview in his native Philippines, according to the Agence France-Presse. “I still feel sorry for him because he acts like an uneducated person. It’s pitiful to me and I’m praying for him.
“He should fear God.”
Pacquiao then quoted a verse from the New Testament book Matthew, according to the AFP.
“For what is a man profited if he shall gain the whole world and lose his own soul?” Pacquiao said.
The recent back-and-forth was rooted in a Pacquiao tweet from last Wednesday in which he took a shot at Mayweather in the wake of a Nevada State Athletic Commission hearing over a Mayweather reality show on Showtime.
Pacquiao next fights Nov. 22 against Chris Algieri, whom some expect to be a worthy opponent. Mayweather has two fights left on his six-fight Showtime deal, after which he plans to retire.
Pacquiao’s comments Monday came after Mayweather’s social-media postings of a photo montage of Pacquiao down on the canvas during a 2012 knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez.
Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum said recently that HBO and Showtime/CBS have been holding talks about working together on a joint pay-per-view.
It remains to be seen whether a deal can be made — it has gone unmade for years despite intense public demand — and Pacquiao still must win his welterweight title defense against Algieri in Macau, China.
“I’m gonna go and talk to my team and see what the future holds,” Mayweather said earlier this month after his second victory over Marcos Maidana. “I don’t know who I’m fighting in May but I expect to fight in May. Manny Pacquiao needs to focus on the guy in front of him. Once he gets past him, he can look to the future. If the Pacquiao fight presents itself, let’s make it happen.”