Surprisingly, Juan Manuel Marquez called out Floyd Mayweather after winning the WBA/WBO Lightweight championships this weekend. After defeating Juan Diaz by spectacular KO, Marquez said in the post-fight interview, “Who wouldn’t want to see that fight (with Mayweather)? I’ll fight him at 140, maybe a little above that. I want to fight the best, the very best.”
“I’ve been trying to get a fight with Manny Pacquiao but he doesn’t want to fight me. So I’m calling out the best and that’s Floyd Mayweather.”
No one expected Marquez to issue the challenge to Mayweather who is not really retired, but uses the false retirement act as a ploy to avoid tough fights against top notch opposition, like Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito. To avoid Shane Mosley, Mayweather priced himself out by demanding a guaranteed $20 million. However in January, Ray Hatton revealed in Boxing News magazine in London that Al Haymon made Team Hatton an offer for a rematch on behalf of Mayweather, but was turned down as Mr. Hatton told Haymon that Team Hatton was very deep into negotiations with Manny Pacquiao. So based on that we know Floyd is not truly retired, he’s just pretending to be.
I went back to my archives and found a quote from Mayweather where he called Juan Manuel Marquez his first most favorite boxer to watch. “Both of the Marquez brothers,” responded Floyd in New York about three or four years ago. “They’re both good boxers. But one – is it the older one? – he’s the truth. The truth. Total Package. He’s probably right behind me as the best fighter pound-for-pound.”
So knowing the high regard Mayweather actually has for the skillset of Marquez, I guess boxing fans can forget about seeing a Mayweather-Marquez clash any time soon. Expect Floyd to either price himself out or use the “I’m tired of boxing” excuse.