Juan Manuel Marquez Speaks: Peterson First, Pacquiao Next

Juan Manuel Marquez has an ultimate goal: A fourth fight with Manny Pacquiao. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Juan Manuel Marquez spoke with The RING today and made clear that he's ready to sign a fight with Lamont Peterson for a fight that would hopefully set up a fourth fight with Manny Pacquiao -- or Timothy Bradley, if that's the way it breaks down.

Marquez: Lamont Peterson is the proposed opponent. I don't know what's going to happen with the fight right now. My promoter tells me that maybe my next fight is going to be in Dallas Stadium.

I feel very happy because you know that I want to fight. I want to fight with Peterson. But I don't know what's going to happen. The promoter tells me maybe Dallas [Cowboys] Stadium.

... Yesterday, I had a meeting with Fernando, and I want to fight with Peterson, but then, I want to fight with Manny Pacquiao again. I want to sign a contract that will give me a chance to fight Manny again, do you understand? ... But if Bradley beats Pacquiao, yes, it would fight him, because this is like a tournament. It's like a tournament. The winners fight the winners."

Marquez (53-6-1, 39 KO) is clearly ready to go forward with Bob Arum's tournament idea, but it's far from set. This would all play out only if Manny Pacquiao does not land a rematch with Miguel Cotto, and instead fights Timothy Bradley on June 9.

At 38, Marquez is running short on time in the boxing game, let alone time at the top of the sport. Or at least that would be the conventional wisdom, anyway. His ultimate goal is to fight Pacquiao yet again and try to get the official win he feels he has deserved in three fights where he's gone 0-2-1 on the record sheet in fights that have seen the men barely separated over 36 rounds.

Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KO) is coming off of a controversial December win over Amir Khan, and is likely as hot as he's going to get as a name in the sport. Even having his foot in the door on Pacquiao discussions seemed a fantasy all of a month and a half ago, but here he is, possibly lining up to fight one of his favorite fighters, with a potential fight against Pacquiao maybe on the line. Quite a jump.

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