Move over Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather, there's a new superfight in town.
After two straight losses by Pac-Man and an absolute dismantling of Robert Guerrero by Mayweather, the clamoring for that bout has cooled considerably.
It would still be an amazingly profitable draw—AKA the biggest in history—but the decreasing likelihood of the bout ever coming to fruition has forced boxing fans to look in a new direction:
Mayweather vs. Canelo Alvarez.
The 22-year-old Mexican is the perceived next best thing in boxing. He is 42-0-1, fresh off a dominant unanimous decision win over previously undefeated Austin Trout and has the offense and size to at least threaten Mayweather's world-class defense.
OK, he has the offense and size to make people hope he can threaten Mayweather's world-class defense, which in turn feeds the hype machine.
While there is little chance Alvarez could win this fight, he unquestionably makes for a tantalizing opponent with the potential to make history.
People are drawn to athletes who have never failed, and with these two undefeated boxers facing off the pay-per-view buys would be off the charts.
From a business perspective, this makes sense for Mayweather.
But that doesn't mean it will happen.
There has been much criticism on Mayweather's propensity to pick the easier opponents, and even claims that his brilliant career is overrated. While the former is pure cockamamie, there is little question he likes to minimize risk with his opponents.
But Saturday's beatdown underscored how Mayweather has behaved more as a businessman than boxer since his rematch with Jose Luis Castillo in 2001, adopting a conservative approach to picking his opponents for 16 consecutive fights. With so much money at stake, who can blame him for eschewing unnecessary risk? He earned a guaranteed $32 million for Saturday's outing, a figure nearly certain to swell to more than $40 million once the pay-per-view and closed-circuit receipts are tallied.
Part of Mayweather's draw—as mentioned earlier—is his perfection. Whether casual boxing fans check in to see him continue history or to see him lose, that zero in his loss column is unquestionably a reason he continues to rake in millions upon millions with every subsequent fight.
Mayweather has already proven he's the clear pound-for-pound champion and one of the greatest fighters of all time, so there's no point in maximizing risk during his final five fights.
Canelo represents risk.
So, while Alvarez would help Mayweather bring in a staggering amount of money, the potential profit in the long term more than makes up for that if Mayweather remains undefeated.
I still believe there's a chance for Money vs. Canelo in 2014 or beyond as the former nears retirement, but with Mayweather forced to rush to set up a September fight, you're going to have to wait for the superfight.