When the judges unveiled their unanimous decision that Floyd Mayweather, Jr. had beaten Shane Mosley, it seemed hard to believe that fans would have to wait more than a year to see Money back in action.
Popular demand and media speculation hinted that a bout against Manny Pacquiao was a distinct certainty, but an agreement between the two parties has become un-negotiable.
The failure for the two camps to agree to terms prompted Mayweather to announce on Twitter that he will fight WBC World Welterweight Champion Victor Ortiz (29-2-2, 22 KOs) on Sept. 17.
The 24-year-old Ortiz is an impressive fighter, especially when his age is taken into consideration. In his championship bout against Andre Berto, Vicious showed he can weather a flurry of punches and that he has a solid left jab.
Pretty Boy will provide a much sterner challenge; he is more accurate than Berto and quicker. Victory against Ortiz will not be routine, but it is reasonable to expect from a man who is unbeaten from 41 professional fights and is a five division champion.
What is more interesting is the future prospects for Mayweather, as there are potential bouts available that could attract his attention.
Sergio Martinez has called out the former No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter but it seems that a fight against Pacquiao is what fans want to see.
Pac Man has added fuel to the fire by suggesting he would be willing to fight Mayweather, provided he wins his WBC bout against Ortiz Saturday. Speaking in the Manila Bulletin, the Filipino said, “That’s good [referring to news that Mayweather is battling Ortiz]. Ortiz is a southpaw like me, so I think Mayweather is preparing. If he gets past Ortiz [then a fight can be made].”
The dream fight, however, may forever be condemned to be nothing more than a flight of fantasy. If it is to go ahead, Pacquiao will have to agree to Mayweather’s exorbitant blood testing demands. He may also have to offer Mayweather a bigger cut of the gate receipts, even though a 50-50 split has already been tabled.
If the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight does not go ahead, Mayweather may be tempted to answer Sergio Martinez’s challenge.
Although the Argentine is currently scheduled to fight Darren Barker on Oct. 1, Martinez has openly called out both Mayweather and Pacquiao for a bout at 154 pounds.
"I never said to Pacquiao or Mayweather to come up to my weight at 160 pounds," Martinez said. "What I said in the past was, 'Hey, let's make an agreement. Let's do a catch weight or let’s fight at 154 pounds.'"
Who will Mayweather fight next?
Although making the weight could be a challenge for Pacquiao, especially when one looks at the damage he took from Antonio Margarito, 154 pounds is a weight Mayweather should easily be able to make.
Indeed, the belief that the fight will take place is echoed by promoter Sampson Lewkowicz:
“Mayweather is a true champion and he will take the fight. My thoughts are he will take the fight if it’s on the table because he will want to prove that he’s number one and beating Martinez would prove that he’s No. 1. I believe it’s a fight that could happen,” he said.
It seems unlikely this will be Mayweather’s last bout, given the fact that he is challenging for a world title. He has lost his recognition as a top pound-for-pound fighter due to inactivity and this is bound to dent his ego.
If this was to be his farewell fight, why would he bother challenging for a title? It seems he is trying to rebuild his name, which has taken a knock in the past 18 months.