What do you do?
You start talking about a fight with
Surprised? I was. When I placed a call to Marquez's co-promoter and right hand man,
Not so. According to Quintana, Marquez has shifted his attention to Hatton, the reigning IBO light welterweight champion. Quintana and Golden Boy have had internal discussions about matching Hatton (who also fights under Golden Boy banner) against Marquez at 140 pounds.
"Flat out, Pacquiao is afraid to fight Juan Manuel," said Quintana. "He doesn't want the fight. So Juan Manuel is moving forward."
Quintana's comments are reinforced by statements made by Golden Boy execs.
"There's no way (Top Rank promoter)
For the record, Pacquiao left the door open for a third fight with Marquez during an interview with reporters in the Philippines this weekend.
"I'm willing to fight him anytime," said Pacquiao. "But since I will be the promoter, he must first accept all the conditions I will ask, including a smaller purse [for him]. "If he agrees to the conditions, I know he is fighting for honor and I will fight him. If not, he's only after getting a big purse."
Statements made by boxing promoters have to be taken with an entire box of salt. If Pacquiao decides tomorrow that he wants another shot at Marquez, it is a fight that can be made in a day. But if it's true that Marquez has moved on, Hatton is an interesting choice.
The most appealing part of a showdown with Hatton is that it would easily be Marquez's most lucrative fight to date, which is a major factor for a fighter who in the past has made some questionable business decisions. Hatton is one of the most popular British fighters in history and a mega fight with Marquez could easily draw 50,000-60,000 fans in Manchester, England. Marquez could earn upwards of $5 million for the fight.
If he can find a way to beat Hatton, who still has to get by
The downside? There is a very good chance Marquez could find himself staggeringly overmatched. The prevailing image of Hatton, for many people, is the beating he took at the hands of
But at 140 pounds, Hatton is a dangerous fighter. He has tremendous punching power (31 of his 44 wins have come by knockout) and would test Marquez's chin, which has been considered suspect in previous fights.
But if Marquez is willing to risk a potentially devastating loss for the promise of an unprecedented payday, Hatton is the right fight.
Not surprisingly, the WBA turned down his request. "After learning that serious allegations were made by Team Ruiz after his defeat against Nikolay Valuev last August 30th in Berlin, Germany, the World Boxing Association (WBA) strongly denies any wrongdoings by any of its appointed officials," the WBA said in a statement.
With the WBA shooting Ruiz down, the only way he will get another rematch with Valuev is if Valuev and his promoters, Sauerland Event, agree to one. And that's not going to happen.
"[We] will not fight Ruiz," said
Meyer's point is well taken. Ruiz-Valuev wasn't even available on U.S. television and, outside of a few pockets in the world, it isn't a marketable fight. Valuev should be eyeing a unification fight with
Who should he choose? My vote goes to
I'll never say that De La Hoya is bad for boxing, I don't care how old he is. The guy is a cash cow who has kept boxing relevant during the lean years. Not only that, when he's on he is still a pretty good fighter.
But your point is well taken, Brian. Oscar disappointed me when he went looking for the fight with Pacquiao instead of taking on a welterweight contender like Margarito. It wasn't about the money. If De La Hoya has proven anything, it's that when it comes to the gate and PPV buys, his opponent is almost irrelevant.
Sad as it is to say, the next truly big fight in De La Hoya's career is the one that retires him, the one that leaves him so battered and bruised that he doesn't want to continue. Margarito represents that possibility and I don't think De La Hoya is willing to go there quite yet. He could lose to Pacquiao, but there is little possibility of him getting seriously hurt.