Floyd Mayweather Needs Decisive Victory in Next Match to Quiet Critics

R. Cory SmithSenior Writer IMay 5, 2014

May 3, 2014; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Marcos Maidana (left) hits Floyd Mayweather Jr during their fight at MGM Grand. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

At 46-0, it wouldn't seem like Floyd Mayweather has anything left to prove.

The 37-year-old has defeated every opponent he's stepped in the ring against, but questions still remain. Has he passed his prime? Was he exposed by Marcos Maidana on Saturday night? And, probably most importantly, will he ever face Manny Pacquiao?

No matter the conclusion to the second or third questions, in order to answer the first, Mayweather will need to obliterate his next opponent, whoever that may be.

Much like every other fighter in the world, Maidana believes he deserves a shot at Mayweather. After pushing Money to the limits on Saturday night, El Chino called for a rematch, per Bob Velin of USA Today.

"If I had my gloves, I would've knocked him out," Maidana said. "He never hurt me with a punch. He wasn't even that tough...I thought I won the fight. I feel like (the decision) was an injustice."

Following the fight, Mayweather addressed the request by seemingly giving the go-ahead for the match to take place, per Gary Parrish of CBS Sports:

Then there's Amir Khan, the same man who won earlier in the night over Luis Collazo in decisive fashion.

After putting on a show for the fans and attempting to convince Mayweather that he's worthy of a fight, Khan extended the challenge to Money yet again, via Velin:

Floyd's getting a little older now. Floyd looks beatable. A lot of people want the fight now because they want a young lion to come up and see him get beat. The only person who has the chance to do that is me.

... I bring explosiveness, and I showed I bring my power to 147. If you look at my fights, even the ones I've lost, when it comes to boxing, no one can beat us. Floyd's a master class in boxing, but I've never lost when it comes to boxing. It'll be skills versus skills. And I think the youth will take it.

Regardless of how convincingly Khan thinks he can be against Mayweather, the fact that the Pakistani Muslim cannot bypass Ramadan in September means that this is likely a fight for next year.

So does that open the window for Pacquiao yet again? With the aforementioned likelihood of "The Moment II", this once again looks like a fight that will never happen.

Whether it's a Maidana rematch, an October matchup with Khan or even the elusive Pacquiao clash, Mayweather's title as the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world is currently in question.

With a huge win against one of the above—preferably one where he doesn't get backed into the ropes and leave doubt—Money will not only sit at 47-0, but sit atop the throne without questions.

Though his quest is clearly for 50-0 and potentially beyond, Mayweather might finally have nothing left to prove.


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