By Joe Thackray [@joe_thackray]
After Floyd Mayweather’s dominating performance in his recording breaking bout with Manny Pacquiao over two weeks ago, many are left wondering who is next for the self proclaimed ‘The Best Ever’?
Mayweather has beaten everybody there is to beat. Surely you couldn’t blame him if he hung up the gloves tomorrow. But Floyd has one fight left on his contract with Showtime Sports and told the fans during his post fight interview that he intends to fight again in September.
But who? Let’s have a look at the potential opponents who could be in for the biggest payday of their careers.
Khan has campaigned at 147 pounds for his last two fights and is no doubt looking better than ever under trainer Virgil Hunter. Many people argue that Khan has the speed and movement to trouble Mayweather and possibly give him his toughest fight to date. For this fight to take place. Khan must take care of former Manny Pacquaio foe, Chris Algeiri in June. It is highly doubtful that Khan and Mayweather will meet in September as Khan is Muslim and therefore celebrates Ramadan which could scupper training preparations. Although, the Bolton native has recently back tracked on this obstacle, identifying eight weeks training as being ample work.
Thurman is making some real noise in the welterweight division. He was touted as being a one punch knockout artist, but has proved in his last two fights that he is more than capable of staying smart and boxing a disciplined twelve round fight. For the Mayweather fight to materialize for Thurman, he is going to have to face some stiffer opposition and really establish himself as a star to the US fans. By the time Thurman has done this, I expect Floyd will be sat in his armchair counting his money and reflecting on a Hall of Fame career.
Aside from his controversial win over Lamont Peterson last month, Danny Garcia has dominated the 140 pound division and fans are expecting him to move up to 147 pounds for his next fight. Garcia is young, strong and has that left hook up his sleeve which I’m sure is capable of troubling the best of the best. This is a fight that could potentially be billed as the young, up-and-coming superstar versus the veteran pound-for-pound king. There is no doubt that Floyd would be the overwhelming favourite in this fight but Garcia’s power would surely be cause for concern for the Mayweather camp and make great viewing for boxing fans both casual and pure.
Mayweather now holds three of the four world title belts in the welterweight division and if he were to try and unify the division further in his last ever fight, he would have to overcome the IBF champion Kell Brook. Brook won his world title after a hard fought contest with ‘Showtime’ Shawn Porter and has since defended his title in style with an impressive dispatch of his mandatory challenger Jo Jo Dan. The Sheffield man is due to face fellow Brit, Frankie Gavin on May 30 and there is no doubt that a life changing fight with Mayweather will be on his mind if he is to overcome the challenge of Gavin. Will a unification fight with Brook get the knuckles of the champ itching? Like Thurman, Brook needs to establish himself as a bigger name and bring in more revenue if he is to land a shot at ‘Money’ Mayweather.
One thing’s for sure. Whether you love Mayweather or hate him, you will no doubt be tuning into to watch one of the all time greats write the last chapter in what has been an incredible story.