Updated 12:51 AM EDT, Thu, Jul 31, 2014

Boxing News 2014: Manny ‘Pacman’ Pacquiao Primed To Win Fighter of the Year, According To Analyst

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Mayweather vs Pacquiao
(Photo : Reuters)

Eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao will have a great year in the ring in 2014, impressive enough to win back the title as the Fighter of the Year, ESPN Boxing analyst Brian Campbell predicted during a recent chat session on ESPN Sports Nation.

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Pacquiao, who is just coming off a 12-round unanimous decision win over Californian brawler Brandon Rios, has yet to pick his next opponent for his April 9 event, though the names of WBO Welterweight champion Timothy Bradley Jr, WBO Jr. Welterweight titlist Ruslan Provodnikov and even pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr. stand out as the likely candidates.

Campbell said he felt Pacquiao is going to have a big impact this year and will end up earning the Fighter of the Year award for the fourth time in his legendary boxing career.

"I think the 2014 fighter of the year will end up being Pacquiao, though, if I had to throw a guess out there. I think he has a shot at bouncing back huge," Campbell said.

Next Fight For the Pacman

 According to Top Rank head promoter Bob Arum, Pacquiao could be facing either Provodnikov or Bradley for his April fight date. The 35-year-old Pacman has been linked to a showdown with Mayweather possibly in September next year, but the veteran promoter quickly quashed the rumors about the alleged super-fight between the two biggest names in boxing today.

"You're going to get reports like this from time to time, but unless it comes from us or Manny, it has absolutely no substance. Well I don't want to debate the whole history. There's so many ins and outs. I hope that this fight can happen, but nothing has moved ahead about this fight. We're planning a fight for Manny in April and Mayweather is planning a fight in May," Arum said during a recent interview with Brad Cooney of 8Counts News.

Pacquiao is on the road to regain his old place atop the pound-for-pound rankings following a devastating sixth round loss to his Mexican archrival Juan Manuel Marquez in their welterweight showdown in December 2012.

Meanwhile, Mayweather was recently crowned the Fighter of the Year by multiple award-giving bodies after peppering welterweight contender Robert Guerrero and former light middleweight king Saul Canelo Alvarez in 2013.

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