Forty-five times Floyd Mayweather has walked into the ring for a professional boxing match. After dispatching Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, 45 times he's left with his hand raised high in the air.
Although judge C.J. Ross didn't see it like most observers did, scoring the fight even at 114-114, Mayweather dominated Alvarez throughout the fight. He seemed unfazed by Alvarez's 15 extra pounds, standing in the pocket for much of the fight and beating Canelo to the punch.
Mayweather was so good he even coined a phrase for the moment—"TBE. The best ever." He never once looked his 36 years, his movement just as crisp in the 12th round as it was in the first. He certainly didn't look like a man at the end of the line. There are plenty of fights to come. The question is not if. It's who?
At this point making fights for Mayweather is a tough task, even for brilliant boxing minds like Golden Boy Promotions matchmaker Eric Gomez and CEO Richard Schaefer. Finding a fighter acceptable to both exacting fans and Team Mayweather is quite a challenge.
There are few fighters, no matter how long their resumes, fans will believe have a chance against "Money." Unfortunately, many of them ply their trade on HBO for rival promoter Top Rank. That eliminates some of the most logical choices to challenge Mayweather, fighters like the undefeated Timothy Bradley and surging Juan Manuel Marquez.
Luckily, Mayweather is willing and able to compete across a variety of weight classes. Even though most of his recent bouts have been contested at welterweight, he's small enough that it isn't unfair to match him with top 140-pounders like Danny Garcia.
Likewise, despite being a small welterweight, Mayweather hasn't hesitated to go up to 154 pounds for the right fight, as he did against Oscar De La Hoya and Alvarez. That opens up other intriguing possibilities as he closes out a Hall of Fame career.
After competing twice in a single calendar year for the first time since 2007, Mayweather is likely to take several months off. That will give Golden Boy and Mayweather Promotions time to consider their options. Here are five for them to chew over, in order of preference.
Have some ideas of your own? Let me know in the comments.