Floyd Mayweather: Early Release Ensures a Strong Opponent When He Re-Enters Ring

Adam FromalNational NBA Featured ColumnistAugust 8, 2012

LAS VEGAS, NV - MAY 05:  Floyd Mayweather Jr. addresses the media after his unanimous decision victory against Miguel Cotto after their WBA super welterweight title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 5, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Wearing a Miami Heat snapback and a gray hoodie, Floyd Mayweather was released from Clark Country Detention Center a month ahead of schedule. He was quickly greeted by family members and some notable guests, including TMT Promotions partner 50 Cent, who escorted him away in a blue Bentley.

Now that the undefeated boxer's 87-day jail sentence is over sooner than anticipated, boxing fans can begin to speculate as to who Mayweather will fight next.

If he was looking to get one fight in before the calendar year, the extra month affords him the opportunity to train and get back into premier fighting shape. He certainly stayed fit during his sentence, but he didn't have the luxury of the top trainers and elite equipment.

Mayweather will be using every extra day to prep for his next fight, against an unnamed opponent.

Whereas a September release date from his sentence for a misdemeanor domestic battery case would have forced him to truncate his training schedule and possibly roll with a tune-up match before stepping into the ring against top-level competition, the early release forces no such move.

With Manny Pacquiao not really an option until 2013, we'll have to wait for the much-dreamed about battle between two of boxing's premier superstars. 

However, the rest of the biggest names are ripe for the picking.

One potential option could be former Welterweight champion Andre Berto, a recent signee with TMT Promotions.  Any fight that "Money" takes part in is going to make headlines, but a contest between these two men—assuming they could both be reinstated following the jail time for Mayweather and failed drug test for Berto—would do wonders for the new promotional outfit. 

Mayweather could also attempt to fight against the current WBO welterweight champion: Timothy Bradley. 

Although "Desert Storm" would be more of a tune-up match than anything else for Mayweather, it would still generate massive headlines following Bradley's controversial decision over Pacquiao in June, while Mayweather was still doing time.

Another intriguing opponent could be Robert Guerrero, although that might be hard to set up given the growing discontent between Oscar De La Hoya and 50 Cent.

We could also see Mayweather fight against Saul Alvarez, clash with Miguel Cotto again or take on the winner of Sergio Martinez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

Of course, that last option is only available if either Mayweather is willing to move up to the middleweight division or if both parties can agree to a catchweight fight. 

Regardless of who his next opponent is, Mayweather has time to both carefully think about his next fight and train for it so that he can protect his undefeated record and put on a show in his first post-jail match.