Following his easy and somewhat pathetic win over Kansas club fighter Raul Munoz on Saturday night in Philadelphia, unbeaten welterweight Mike Jones said he's ready to fight Manny Pacquiao in November should the Filipino superstar need a new opponent:
"I am waiting for the phone call from Bob Arum. If anything happens to Marquez on July 16, I will take the fight with Pacquiao. He is such a great warrior. Let’s see how he deals with my right hand. I am much more confident now and am ready for big fights."
Marquez faces Likar Ramos on July 16 in Mexico for a tune-up. Many have questioned why Marquez, who turns 38 in August, would risk a $5 million + incentives payday against Pacquiao in a fight he's been chasing for three years, for something like a fight with Likar Ramos, but it's just about taking an easy fight so Marquez won't have extra rust in November. It's a risk, but one perhaps worth taking, unless of course Marquez just obliterates Ramos, as he should, and then, it's like, what's the point, y'know?
As for Jones, he was recently brought up by Bob Arum as a potential 2012 opponent for Pacquiao, but basically nobody thinks that talk is real, more an easy, free way to get Jones' name out there to the public to help promote a fighter who is still basically an unknown, and as a six foot tall welterweight, has trouble getting good fights.
But with perennial backup choice Miguel Cotto all but signed for a rematch with Antonio Margarito on December 3, if something does happen to Marquez on July 16 like a loss or a bad injury, who else could fight Manny? There might actually be something to this given the timeframe available for other notable welterweights.
Jones is the No. 1 contender for Pacquiao's WBO welterweight title, too. Following him in the semi-hilarious rankings are Kell Brook, Pacquiao sparring partner Shawn Porter, Diego Gabriel Chaves, Brad Solomon, Mike Alvarado, Andre Berto, Samuel Colomban, Paul Malignaggi and Rafal Jackiewicz. Keep these rankings in mind the next time a TV broadcaster tells you about a fighter being ranked in the top ten for any "sanctioning" body.