As if the ongoing dispute on who is number 1 is not yet enough, ABS-CBN and GMA find another reason to engage in word war over the recent issue involving the airing rights for the upcoming Pacquiao-Hatton bout (The Battle of East and West) on May 2, 2009 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
On March 18, Manny Pacquiao announced in public that the Pacquiao-Hatton fight will be aired by ABS-CBN. Inside sources say that ABS-CBN allegedly offered Pacquiao full media support in the upcoming 2010 elections.
The announcement, however, put Pacquiao in a breach of his existing contract with Solar Sports and GMA, who were airing his previous fights. After a long meeting with Solar and GMA officials in Los Angeles, Pacquiao agreed on Saturday, to honor his contract with Solar Sports. This was officially announced on Monday, March 23, via a Press Conference organized by GMA and Solar.
As this develops, ABS-CBN said that they respect Pacquiao's decision to remain in terms with Solar Sports.
But the story did not end there. To keep the flame of issue burning, Pacquiao has released another remark that has again led to a new series of word battle.
Manny Pacquiao stressed out that he did not give his go-signal for ABS-CBN to air his footage announcing his controversial decision to rescind his live contract with Solar Entertainment Corp. to hook up with the network. In a phone patch from LA, the boxing superstar claimed he only agreed to do the video for ABS-CBN and issue the statement of transfer on condition they would only be made public if he were to find contractual violations on the part of Solar.
Pacquiao was also quoted as revealing that representatives of ABS-CBN were actually the ones who prepared his previous statement insisting that the fight would be shown in ABS-CBN.
ABS-CBN issued a statement that they were surprised by Pacquiao's announcement.
"We respond because [Pacquiao’s] charge strikes at our core values as a news organization: Honest reporting and respect for our sources.”
They further clarified that Pacquiao gave consent to air the video.
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