For over a year, the boxing world seems hung up on one potential fight: the No. 1 and No. 2 pound-for-pound kings, Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, Jr.
Boxing fans have salivated thinking about how a fight between the fast-moving, high-energy, combination-punching Pacquiao and the tactful, quick, counter-punching Mayweather might go down. Some have gone as far as predicting one of the best fights in history.
I, too, cannot wait for that matchup. But I would rather see one other fight.
I want to see two undefeated featherweight knockout artists go head-to-head. I want to see Juan Manuel Lopez of Puerto Rico and Yuriorkis Gamboa of Cuba.
Stylistically, Mayweather versus Pacquiao could be an entertaining contest, but more likely will be a 12-round chess match. Lopez versus Gamboa, on the other hand, is destined to be a fast-paced classic.
The two have a combined record of 48 wins with no losses or draws and an incredible 41 wins by knockout. Most of their opponents don't even make it out of the first round.
Did I mention that they fight at 126 lbs?
This fight would be a hardcore boxing fan's dream, while also keeping casual fans glued to their television sets.
Lopez and Gamboa are filled with energy and often throw more than 100 punches in a round. Both have huge knockout power with either hand. Neither fighter is prone to clinching, nor does either fight with a decision victory in mind. This fight is practically guaranteed to be a slugfest.
Whenever this fight goes down, I would wager that it will be the clear-cut winner for the fight of the year.
The best part? It looks like it's in the works.
Gamboa is coming off of a rare decision victory over veteran Orlando Salido. Lopez has a November 6th showdown with Rafael Marquez that he is expected to win. Assuming that Lopez pulls off the victory, he and Gamboa are on a crash course. Amidst all of the tough negotiations and standoffs among the top boxing promoters, it's nice to know that the fans will get a treat for a change.
I'm sitting here with my fingers crossed, hoping and praying that the possible fight of the decade doesn't get shelved.