Juan Manuel Marquez’s shocking sixth-round knockout of Manny Pacquiao has opened doors for the veteran Mexican fighter, and he has several attractive options for his next fight.
Pacquiao was supposed to use this fight to gain leverage in negotiations for a superfight with Floyd Mayweather Jr., but Marquez’s vicious counterpunch changed everyone’s plans.
Now, Pac-Man will have to plan out his future carefully if he hopes to fight Mayweather, and Marquez will have no shortage of options.
Here are the fighters who should be on top of Dinamita’s list of potential opponents.
Timothy Bradley has not fought since his controversial victory over Pacquiao this summer, and the current WBO welterweight champion has expressed interest in getting into the ring with Marquez.
The Desert Sun’s Leighton Ginn reported, “Bradley said he would welcome a fight against Marquez, saying it would make sense.”
Bradley is right about the matchup being a logical choice for both fighters. Each athlete has been in a headline-making bout this year, and stepping in the ring with a belt on the line would draw in plenty of fans.
Agreeing to a fight with Bradley would not be a terrible decision. But Marquez is coming off one of the most incredible fights in recent memory, and he should use his current standing to negotiate a fight with one of the top boxers in the world. That leaves two options.
This speculative matchup is the one that started being discussed before Pacquiao was even off the canvas.
After putting on such a thrilling fight, fans would certainly tune in to watch Pac-Man and Marquez go at it for a fifth time.
The two fighters have conflicting styles that lead to four hugely entertaining bouts, and another rematch would almost certainly follow the same pattern. Sometimes, the easy choice is the best one.
Few would complain about getting to see Pacquiao attempt to redeem himself while Marquez continues to wait patiently for the Filipino fighter to let his guard down. But there is still one fighter who provides a better choice for Marquez.
Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Marquez will likely have few problems booking a fight with any boxer, and he should take advantage of the situation. The 39-year-old’s best option is to take on the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet.
This would be a rematch of a 2009 fight that Mayweather won by unanimous decision.
There are some concerns over this matchup, as both fighters are known for their defensive prowess, and it is unlikely that Mayweather vs. Marquez would produce the fireworks that boxing fans witnessed this past weekend.
Still, any fight involving Mayweather will attract plenty of attention, and given Marquez’ recent performance, he too will pull in plenty of fans.