Without talking to each other, Bob Arum and Oscar De La Hoya set their personal differences aside and agreed to do business together.
The apparent resolution of their feud benefits boxing in at least one way. The immediate result will be a marquee fight matching Manny Pacquiao and Marco Antonio Barrera on Oct. 6 at Mandalay Bay.
It was announced Friday that Golden Boy Promotions, headed by De La Hoya, and Top Rank, headed by Arum, reached a settlement of legal disputes pertaining to Pacquiao, a popular 130-pound Filipino fighter.
“I have not spoken with Oscar. I plan to do that sometime soon,” Arum said. “There are many, many great fights that we can put together.”
Arum said he met Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer for lunch Wednesday and a deal was reached for the Pacquiao-Barrera bout.
The credit for settlement of the legal issues, Arum said, goes to mediator Daniel Weinstein, a retired California state judge who brought both sides to common ground.
“People tend to be stubborn. Without the mediator this would not have gotten done,” Arum said. “The mediator did a fantastic job, and I think Richard would say the same.
“You start putting aside the feelings of animosity and work constructively to get something done. By the time we resolved everything, there were no longer any hard feelings.”
Golden Boy and Top Rank got into a bitter court battle over Pacquiao last year.
At a September meeting in Beverly Hills, Calif., De La Hoya reportedly handed Pacquiao a suitcase filled with $250,000 in an attempt to induce him to sign a deal.
Pacquiao was in Los Angeles to train for his third fight with Erik Morales. The Nov. 18 super featherweight fight, won by Pacquiao by third-round knockout at the Thomas & Mack Center, was promoted by Top Rank, which claimed Pacquiao was not free to sign with Golden Boy.
Arum, frequently harsh in his criticism of Golden Boy, reportedly later paid Pacquiao $1 million.
“I don’t want to get into that,” Arum said when asked about De La Hoya and the suitcase transaction. “That’s to be forgotten, as far as I’m concerned. We go on to bigger and better things.”
Under terms of the settlement, bouts between Pacquiao and fighters under contract to Golden Boy — such as Barrera — will be co-promoted by Golden Boy and Top Rank. If Pacquiao faces boxers not under the Golden Boy umbrella, those fights will be promoted by Top Rank with Golden Boy retaining a promotional interest.
No other details of the settlement were disclosed.
One fighter who might not be promoted by Top Rank much longer is Jose Luis Castillo. The 33-year-old Mexican made a disappointing showing last Saturday, when he was knocked out in the fourth round by IBO super lightweight champion Ricky Hatton.
“I really think that (Castillo) seriously should consider hanging it up,” Arum said. “His legs were shot and you could tell that right from the beginning.
“I don’t want to denigrate him. He has been such a terrific performer. But there comes a time when you just don’t have it anymore to the extent you once did.”