A few days ago, while celebrating his new big money deal with Showtime, Floyd Mayweather Jr. casually mentioned that he would not close the door on a possible super fight with Manny Pacquiao. Essentially he said that, if his Filipino rival could avenge his defeats to Juan Manuel Marquez and Timothy Bradley, he would give the bout some thought.
It would be easy to dismiss Mayweather’s comments as nothing more than empty talk, but that’s just an extreme oversimplification of the circumstances at hand. Here are the facts: Showtime inked a 36-year-old fighter to a lengthy, very pricey deal for a reason. It wasn’t because of how many matches he still has ahead of him – it’s because they are counting on whatever matches he does participate in being top-dollar, must-see events.
In May, Mayweather will take on Robert Guerrero. Once he makes relatively quick work of The Ghost, Mayweather will turn his attention to the winner of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alavarez versus Austin Trout. Most likely the former. Regardless of whether he can beat Canelo or not, once that bout is done, Mayweather will be looking for a big name to co-star with him on an early 2014 card. Maybe it will be Amir Khan. Perhaps it will be someone else. But if there are no other worthy contenders on the scene at that point, is it really that farfetched to suggest that Mayweather would seek out a fight against Pacquiao? The match, after all, would be a guaranteed blockbuster.
During a recent interview with Boxing Scene, Bob Arum was asked about Pacquiao and Mayweather fighting at some point down the line. His response: “Just forget him (Mayweather).”
The reality is, barring another Pacquiao loss that sends the Filipino star into retirement, a super fight between him and Mayweather will become increasingly more appealing as time goes on. Not because it will pack the same sort of substantive punch it once could have, but because of the name recognition at hand.
Arum may want to forget about Mayweather now, but in 2014, when his guy is seeking out a big PPV draw, all involved will be singing a different tune.