Last Saturday’s showdown between Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez was important for a number of reasons. Obviously, on a micro level, it went some ways in stabilizing the debate regarding who was the superior fighter was.
Prior to that Marquez knockout, it was hard to make the case that he and Pacquiao were anything even remotely resembling equals. Now that he has one victory against his rival, though, Marquez at least has some claim to that. (Pacquiao is still 2-1-1 against him.)
Beyond the immediate impact of the end result on Pacquiao and Marquez, last weekend’s bout also had massive ramifications for boxing as a whole. These were two titans in the sport colliding – it was inevitable that the fallout would be substantial.
Let’s take a look at who some of the biggest winners and losers from Saturday’s showdown
Winner: Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. no longer has to fight Manny Pacquiao. He has the perfect excuse to pass on the bout – it’s not a battle between the two best pound-for-pounders anymore. (It hasn’t been for over a year now, but that is neither here nor there.) Mayweather was the favorite in this match-up all along, and barring him and Pacquiao actually throwing down, in everyone’s minds he will be viewed as the guy who “would have” won. He’s rich. (Even without that massive payday.) His undefeated streak is intact. His arch rival went down in humiliating fashion. Life is good for Floyd Mayweather Jr. these days.
Loser: 50 Cent
50 Cent picked the wrong side. For whatever reason, the rapper-turned-mogul decided to alienate Floyd Mayweather Jr. and attempt to align himself with Manny Pacquiao’s camp. The only leverage he had coming in was being able to serve as a mediator for a potential super fight – that leverage is gone now.
Winner: Robert Guerrero
No matter what, Floyd Mayweather Jr. will fight Canelo Alvarez in 2013. Seeing as he (Floyd) announced that he would fight twice next year, that leaves only one open spot remaining. If Manny Pacquiao had emerged from this latest bout victorious, the public would have begged for a late-year super fight. Now that the demand for Mayweather-Pacquiao has declined, though, Robert Guerrero has a much better shot of landing the other match Mayweather has planned for 2013.
Loser: Brandon Rios
The general presumption was that, if Manny Pacquiao won this fight, he would likely take on either Timothy Bradley or Brandon Rios next year. For the latter, Pacquiao could have served as a stepping stone of sorts to more prestige and acclaim. Obviously that’s not going to happen now.
Winner: Bob Arum
Bob Arum never wanted the super fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao to happen, and it appears as though he is going to get his wish.
Loser(s): Buboy Fernandez and Michael Koncz.