Petra Kirsch – Gelsenkirchen
Highly-decorated boxer Manny Pacquiao, who turns 33 later this year, has just two years or five fights left in the sport, according to his promoter Bob Arum, who also stated that his upcoming contest with Juan Manuel Marquez will also count as one of the five. On The Beak‘s Petra Kirsch lists a number of plausible opponents that Arum may align his welterweight star with…
Pacquiao is a 58-fight professional with a 53-3-2, 38ko record, a six/eight-weight world champion (depending on what belts you recognise), a fan-friendly fighting style and a clutch of star names on his resume including Miguel Cotto, Oscar de la Hoya, Juan Manuel Marquez, Erik Morales and Ricky Hatton.
There is no question that the Filipino southpaw will be a first ballot hall of fame inductee as soon as he is legible for inclusion and, according to Top Rank founder Bob Arum – who promotes Pacquiao – he may just have two years or five fights left before he hangs up his gloves for good.
“I would envision five more fights for Pacquiao and that includes his fight this November 12 against Juan Manuel Marquez,” Arum is quoted to have said by Yahoo.
Pacquiao is still the pound-for-pound king. He has gone from being a flyweight world champion (112lbs) to super welterweight titlist (154lbs) in 13 years, however, he – along with Arum – have received criticism of late for matching Pacman with fighters who are either a: within Arum’s own stable of boxers at Top Rank, b: coming off of a loss or a recent loss, or c: possess deteriorated talent.
If Pacquiao will stay true to the retirement plans that Arum has laid out for him will he continue to be aligned with name fighters who are past their prime or take on the toughest assignments out there?
1: Floyd Mayweather Jr
A tear-up between Mayweather Jr and Pacquiao is the fight that all boxing fans, from the casual to the hardcore, are desperate to see. There is too much money available to both fighters for the bout to not take place and it is one that has been publicly welcomed by both boxers this week here and here.
2: Mike Jones
A contest against Jones would further quell the notion that Pacquiao avoids black American boxers but it poses little commercial value to the Filipino, nor would it heighten his legacy. Jones is a Top Rank fighter and someone Arum has spoken highly of here, while Jones himself said he fancied the Pacquiao fight.
3: Miguel Cotto
A rematch against Cotto would prove very little considering the battering Pacquiao gave him in 2009. Cotto, though, could challenge Julio Cesar Chavez Jr for his middleweight title in 2012 and, if successful, could be regarded as an “easy” target for Pacquiao to grab a title in his seventh/ninth weight class.
4: Timothy Bradley
Undefeated American Bradley has a good winning momentum, is the consensus number one at super lightweight and is rumoured to be waiting on his contract to expire with Gary Shaw before moving to Top Rank. Bradley, though, may provide Pacquiao with a competitive fight despite being burdened with the underdog tag.
5: Saul Alvarez
Popular Mexican Alvarez is another undefeated boxer. He is highly-hyped but his performances warrant the praise. By challening Alvarez for his world title at super welterweight Pacquiao would be showing he still has what it takes to rise to the occasion and defeat the best in the divisions around him.
6: Kermit Cintron
Has lost or tied his most important fights to date and has demonstrated little to show he is worthy of the financial remuneration and fame that comes with sharing a ring with Pacquiao, however, he is a Top Rank fighter and therefore remains a possible opponent.