Every December the boxing world buzz burns hot with the topic of who will Floyd Mayweather face next and what are the chances that it will be Manny Pacquiao.
All signs point to Amir Khan as the winner of the Money May Sweepstakes for May, 3 2014.
With numerous recent reports it would seem the only thing that needs to be figured out now is the place and undercard.
Obviously it needs to happen in a somewhat timely fashion in order to beat the drums of hype, something Golden Boy & Mayweather Promotions will need with the major backlash this fight has received any time it’s been mentioned since Amir was sparked out by Danny Garcia in the summer of 2012.
I will breakdown some opponent options for Floyd Mayweather along with some possibilities and combinations for undercard fights and other future B sides.
We have known for some time that Floyd has his home away from home the MGM Grand Arena reserved, but with Khan’s U.K. profile there is an outside chance the fight could be made overseas or in Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.
Floyd’s even said of late in a few interviews that he is leaving the opponent and even the venue open with new offers on the table from the Barclays Center and presumably Wembley Stadium.
Let’s start with Amir Khan as we analyze his pros and cons (no pun intended) as a future dancing partner for Mayweather.
Believe it or not Amir Khan brings a lot as a B-side name to help sell a PPV fight even with his recent struggles in the ring with top level fighters.
He’s a household name to hardcore and some casual fans all over the world. I use the term household name in a lightly being fully aware that Khan’s profile has yet to reach the height’s that he and Golden Boy Promotions had planned in America at this point.
That said not long ago Amir was talked about as one of the fighters that possessed enough speed, power, and offensive skilled mixed with aggressiveness to give Mayweather problems.
However the days of dominating and openly challenging all comers at the junior welterweight division is in his rear mirror.
Most will tell you Amir Khan doesn’t deserve a golden ticket because of the back to back losses versus top flight opponents.
Not to mention his last two fights in which Khan was getting hit with the same shots he always has from Molina who is a non puncher and Julio Diaz who’s best days are past him, after telling everyone who would listen that he is a changed fighter.
He had a chance to win a belt in a fight that was all but done against Devon Alexander. Khan declined the offer instead choosing to sit on the sidelines realizing Floyd’s lack of viable foes for May.
If Khan is the guy the PPV undercard could have an America vs. U.K. theme.
Fights like newly crowned 147 pound champion Shawn Porter versus mandatory challenger Kell Brook and/or a unification fight between a pair of unbeaten fighters Leo Santa Cruz and Carl Frampton would make for interesting subplots raising the interest levels for U.K. fans.
Another name that fans must not forget is “Vicious” Victor Ortiz who fights the very capable Luis Collazo January 30th on FS-1. If Vic were to get past Collazo it would put him in line with more than enough time to have a full training camp.
Similar to Khan, Victor is coming off a few losses yet managed to be able to raise his profile even higher being a contestant on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” and a role in the upcoming action move.
Fans will say Vic has plenty of work to do if he gets by Collazo. This scribe won’t be surprised one bit if they choose Ortiz not for May in September for a rematch.
This fight is very promotable from Vic’s popularity and of course the fashion in which the 1st fight ended. Waiting until late January to find out if Vic wins and the late start for the press tour may be enough reason to pass on him now and put him on the undercard if he wins than he could be a strong B side in September for Money May.
I fully expected the winner for the Danny Garcia vs. Lucas Matthysse would be the one who gets his highest payday and a chance to fight Mayweather.
I still think if Matthysse had been the one who got his hand raised back in September that he would have been steered into a fight with Money May.
Instead Golden Boy, Al Haymon, and Team Garcia have different plans to build Danny’s career with no urgency to make him take on the world’s best pound for pound fighter.
Both fighters return to the ring sometime in the spring so that all but counts them out.
Now that Erislandy Lara is hot again coming off his best win over Austin Trout, many hardcore fans will lobby for the slick Cuban fighter to be the man that can finally take Mayweather’s “0”.
That fight could be a snoozer and Lara has yet to turn the dial enough to be considered popular enough to fight Mayweather.
Others want Golden Boy/Al Haymon to strike while the kettles hot claiming Marcos Maidana should be in line after defeating the unbeaten Adrien Broner who while not as well as Floyd uses his own version of the shoulder roll/Philly Shell.
Maidana has been on a tear after losing an ugly fight with Devon Alexander, knocking out Jesus Soto Karass and Josesito Lopez before scoring what could turn out to be the upset of the year from San Antonio last Saturday.
And with Maidana’s ever growing name amongst his adopted base the Mexican/Mexican American’s, overall hardcore fans around the world including his homeland Argentina where he was honored with athlete of the year making him a legit opponent.
Other names on the verge of landing bigger fights more promising fights in 2014 would be Shawn Porter, Keith Thurman, and of course a very recognizable name of one Paulie Malignaggi.
Rematches with Canelo or Cotto will be kicked down the road for possible 2015 super fights which leaves us with the Top Rank duo in Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley.
No need to talk about this until after next year with Manny’s contract set to expire in 2014.
I guess it could be considered a very long shot only because of some recent tax issues for Manny. Manny may have enough of a money issue to force a fight with Floyd not worrying as much about the purse split.
The fact that Bradley is still without fans that buy tickets in waves could entice Arum to do a deal with Mayweather knowing he could not get that kind of money matching him with anyone else.
Whoever it turns out to be one thing is for sure Golden Boy and Mayweather Promotions will have to build a strong undercard for the hardcore’s and help build the younger fighters names, something they promised and have fulfilled the last 2 or so years.
I’m still very skeptical about Floyd Mayweather fighting outside of Las Vegas or anyone else besides Amir Khan for May.
As previous mentions based off recent interviews with Floyd that a serious offer is in place with enough zero’s to make Mayweather head east to Brooklyn or across the pond to England.
I fully expect to see the U.K. vs. America theme take place on the undercard with Amir Khan in the main event.
Hopefully Mayweather can fight a more deserving or hot fighter in September for the Mexican Independence Weekend.
Written by Chris Carlson Owner and Host of Rope A Dope Radio at www.blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio
Follow Chris on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio & http://ropeadoperadio.wordpress.com/