In a statement, Pacquiao said he respected Nike’s stand in support of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community which he was at odds with, Philstar reported.
“Kung ano man 'yong decision nila, decision nila 'yon, nirerespeto ko at tsaka ang pag-sponsor nila sa akin, 'yung mga damit lang naman para sa fight,” he said.
The report added that the eight-division world champion was already looking for a possible new sponsor.On Thursday, Nike severed ties with Pacquiao who was among their roster of elite endorsers.
This came after Pacquiao made a controversial statement where he likened the LGBT community to animals. He has since apologized for his comments, but maintains his stand against same-sex marriage.
For his part, Pacquiao’s promoter and Top Rank CEO Bob Arum said he had to side with Nike this time.
“His comments were made to a Filipino audience, where same-sex marriage is not as accepted as it is here, and Manny is a convert of enlightened Christianity, which does not believe in same-sex relationships,” said the veteran boxing promoter.
“But to people in the United States, his words can only be viewed as hate speech," he added. "If I was running Nike, I would have to make the same decision they did.”
Pacquiao is scheduled to face US boxer Timothy Bradley Jr. for the third time on April 9. The fight will reportedly be the last of the Pac-Man's pugilistic career.