Five-weight world champion Floyd Mayweather announced on December 12 that he will be making his return on May 4 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada against a yet-to-be-named opponent.
Nicknamed ‘Money’, Mayweather has been absent from the squared circle after being jailed from June to August having pleaded guilty to assaulting his ex-girlfriend back in 2010.
The WBC welterweight and WBA light-middleweight titleholder last fought against Miguel Cotto in May 2012.
Unbeaten in 43 fights since turning professional in 1996, many regard Mayweather as pound-for-pound the best pugilist in the world.
Although no opponent has been named for his comeback, there are several worthy challengers at 10.5 stone and at 11 stone who could test the American.
1. Robert Guerrero
While Mayweather was incarcerated Guerrero defeated the then unbeaten Selcuk Aydin in his first welterweight bout to capture the WBC interim title.
Since that win in July, ‘The Ghost’ dropped Andre Berto twice in the opening round en route to a unanimous points victory to defend his title in November.
Boxing takes the center stage this evening. The HBO PPV is live at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada, 9:00 eastern time, when Manny Pacquiao (54-2-2) faces Juan Manuel Marquez (54-6-1). The fighters meet each for the fourth time after 36 epic rounds. Their last meeting on November 12, 2011 ended with a majority decision in favor of Pacquiao.
Many boxing observers believed that Marquez won the fight, despite scorecard totals of 114-114, 115-113 and 116-112. Pacquiao’s sluggish performance during the fight was the primary reason he should have lost to Marquez.
The previous two fights ended in a draw and a split decision victory for Pacquiao.
The buildup for Pacquiao-Marquez 4 has centered on the idea of neither fighter being better than his opponent. Pacquiao and Marquez are evenly matched boxers.
There is only one fight that the public want to see involving Manny Pacquiao and a fourth bout against Juan Manuel Marquez is not it.
‘Pacman’ will take on four-weight world champion Marquez for the fourth time on December 8 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
In each of the previous three Marquez-Pacquiao fights there has been no definitive winner as they have ended in a draw, and a split decision as well as a majority decision in Pacquiao’s favour.
Floyd Mayweather and Pacquiao are widely recognised as pound-for-pound the best pugilists in the world but negotiations for a mega fight between the pair have fallen through on several occasions.
While Filipino Pacquiao, 33, has been unable to decisively defeat 39-year-old Marquez, his adversary Mayweather has. Although he was over the 10.7 stone weight limit when they fought, Mayweather completely dominated Marquez in 2009, dropping him once en route to a lopsided points decision.
It was announced on November 27 that Andre Ward would defend his WBC and WBA super-middleweight titles against Kelly Pavlik on January 26 in Los Angeles.
It will be Ward’s first bout since defeating the world’s best light-heavyweight, Chad Dawson, in September.
On paper, former undisputed middleweight titlist Pavlik has a record of 40 wins (34 K.Os) and two losses and is a stern test for Ward. However, Pavlik has done little in the 12 stone division to suggest that he has earned a world title shot.
The 30-year-old Pavlik was soundly beaten by middleweight number one Sergio Martinez back in 2010 and moving up in weight against an opponent who has not been defeated since he was 12 and who is a better operator than Martinez, could be a step too far for ‘The Ghost’.
A 2004 gold medallist at the Athens Olympic Games, Ward has completely cleaned out the super-middleweight division. From 2009 to 2011, the 28-year-old Californian defeated world-class fighters in the Super Six World Boxing Classic such as Arthur Abraham, Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler.
Two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton makes his return to the squared circle on November 24 following a three-year hiatus against Vyacheslav Senchenko at the Manchester Arena, England.
‘The Hitman’ last fought in 2009 where he was knocked out cold by Manny Pacquiao in two rounds. The Mancunian officially retired in July 2011 but confirmed that he was making his in-ring comeback in September, which was greeted with mixed reactions.
The 34-year-old has been boxing professionally since 1997 and captured world titles at light-welterweight and welterweight, amassing a record of 45 wins (32 K.Os) and two losses in the process.
A pressure fighter with an incredibly high work rate, Hatton defeated the likes Kostya Tszyu, Jose Luis Castillo and Paulie Malignaggi.
A noted body puncher, he only came up short against boxing’s best in Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr; who handed Hatton his first loss in 2007 via a 10th round stoppage.
But why does Hatton feel the need to make a comeback?