Floyd “Money” Mayweather (44-0) defeated Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (31-2-1) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas via a unanimous decision, but the biggest winner Saturday night was Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-0-1).
Alvarez has been the focus of the boxing world since beating Austin Trout on April 20, and most boxing fans and experts believe that the potential matchup between Mayweather and Canelo would be one of the biggest-drawing pay-per-view events in history.
At only 22 years old, Alvarez would be the ultimate test for the 36-year-old Mayweather, but the respect the pound-for-pound toughest man would get stepping into the ring with a legitimate challenger like Canelo and beating him would cement Money’s spot as one of the greatest of all time.
The fans aren’t the only people who want this fight, though.
Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinoza—the man that signed Mayweather to a six-fight contract—spoke to the Los Angeles Times after Alvarez defeated Trout about the possibility of this megafight coming to fruition sooner rather than later:
It was definitely an exciting performance, but it also showed some flaws that ‘Canelo’ has, and Floyd makes you pay for every single flaw you have. So while I’m sure 'Canelo’ will get better, I’m sure Floyd was salivating while watching that. The time is right for that fight as long as Floyd gets past Guerrero.
Despite reports that Mayweather isn’t even considering Alvarez as a next possible opponent—MLive.com is reporting the names being tossed around for Money's next bout are Amir Khan, Danny Garcia and Victor Ortiz—the possible payout of a fight with Alvarez would be huge.
With any hope of a megafight with Manny Pacquiao getting KO’d, there is no doubt that the biggest possible draw for the sport of boxing would be Mayweather vs. Alvarez. Just ask CBS's Gary Parrish:
Gary Parrish @GaryParrishCBS
Canelo Alvarez-Floyd Mayweather would smash all money records if they do it in 2014. "Mayweather would kill him," said @kellyparrish.2013-4-21 04:05:53
Canelo would be a tough test for Money, but there are some that believe the fight would be a one-sided beating. One of those people is Mayweather’s own dad.
Floyd Mayweather Sr. told David Mayo of MLive.com after Saturday’s fight about the challenge (or lack thereof) that Alvarez would present his son in a potential fight:
It might be a little tough, but then, it might not be nothing. I'm going to tell you, what I've seen of him, I haven't seen nothing. I'm going to be honest with you. Can Little Floyd whup him? Hey, as a matter of fact, I think it would be easy if Little Floyd did what he did tonight, gets on his toes, pop-pop-pop-pop. What can he do? He can't keep running at Floyd and running into Floyd or he's gonna go through the ropes.
The trash talk in this potential battle would be flat-out amazing, but whether this fight ever comes to fruition or not, Alvarez remains the biggest winner of Saturday night.
Mayweather has played the villain throughout his career, and just like the people flocked to Pacquiao to be the one that would defeat Money, the boxing world will rally around Alvarez as their knight in shining armor.
If Mayweather dodges Alvarez now after Canelo beat Trout, the aura around the Mexican champion will grow exponentially as long as he continues to win; this could be the next international boxing hero fans love.
Mayweather would be smart to take this fight on now and answer the doubters, but no matter what happens next, it’s clear that Alvarez is the new primary adversary of Money.
Move over Pac-Man, Canelo has taken over.