Juan Manuel Marquez thought about retirement. His wife wanted him to hang up the gloves and go out on the highest note of his Hall of Fame-bound career. But Marquez, who turns 40 in August, has decided to fight on, and will return to the ring in April.
As mentioned before, two names under consideration for a fight on April 13 or 20 are Jessie Vargas and Vyacheslav Senchenko, with sources saying Vargas is the leading candidate. The 23-year-old Vargas (21-0, 9 KO) has been given plenty of attention the last few years, first on Mayweather undercards and now as a Top Rank prospect, but there's a very good argument that he's nowhere near ready for Marquez. Of course, there's an argument he'd never truly be ready for someone like Marquez.
Of those two opponents, I do believe Vargas is the style matchup more likely to result in a good fight. Jessie can become a little mechanical and coast his way through fights, but Marquez obviously wouldn't let him do that. If Vargas came to win, he'd have to fight for it, and it could be fun, even if it winds up lopsided in favor of the star. Senchenko, who is more qualified for a Marquez fight (but still not particularly qualified), might result in a more tentative Marquez, given that Senchenko would have a big height advantage, and we could end up with a fight where two guys are hoping to counter-punch, which is never very fun.
The grand plan, of course, is for Marquez to fight Manny Pacquiao for a fifth time later this year, possibly in September, but everyone wants to fight in September, so something will have to be pushed back. We're not going to have Mayweather vs Canelo, Martinez vs Chavez Jr II, and Marquez vs Pacquiao V all on the same night. In fact, unless Top Rank went crazy and put Marquez-Pacquiao and Sergio-Julio on the same show, we'll have none of them on the same night. And please, please, please don't ask about "dueling pay-per-views." It won't happen, ever.