Gay marriage issue could sell Pacquiao's fight

Posted at 05/24/2012 9:58 PM | Updated as of 05/25/2012 12:25 PM

Analyst believes Pacman didn't do it on purpose


MANILA, Philippines – The controversy spawned by Manny Pacquiao’s stance on gay marriage could actually mean more pay-per-view buys for the boxer’s June 9 title defense.

Bob Arum told sports columnist Tim Dahlberg that Pacquiao’s stand against same-sex union may have caught the attention of some sectors in the US.

The attention, said Arum, could help sell Pacquiao’s upcoming fight against Timothy Braldey.

"We have so many evangelical Christians living in this country that have paid attention to this whole thing. Some of these people would never think of buying a fight and they might buy it, I don't know. It certainly isn't what was intended," said Arum.

Pacquiao created a stir after sharing his thoughts about US President Barack Obama’s support for same-sex marriage.

The fighting congressman said he didn’t favor same-sex union which ran against his Christian beliefs.

But his stand became even more controversial when a couple of media outlets have mistakenly quoted him invoking a Biblical passage, which generally called for death against homosexuals.

Pacquiao denied citing verses from the Holy Scripture in relation to same-sex marriage.

"The reporter asked me about my stance on it and I answered his question," Pacquiao said. "I am against legalizing same-sex marriage. That was all I said."

Dahlberg, meanwhile, said the Filipino boxer could not have made the statements to sell his upcoming fight.

“It's hard to believe Pacquiao tried to insert himself into the debate over gay marriage in the hope it would sell a few more pay-per-views for his June 9 fight against Timothy Bradley,” he said.

He said even Arum could not have hatched the idea of using the same sex union as a scheme to sell fight tickets.

“He's been promoting fights for the better part of a half century and done some silly things to sell tickets, but even he wouldn't have been able to dream up a scheme to get this fight in the news by having Pacquiao seem to disparage gays as well as gay marriage,” Dahlberg said.