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Oscar keeping his May date to tune up for Floyd

Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Source: Yahoo! Sports (Dave Meltzer)

Really? Dave Meltzer got the scoop on this one?

In short: Oscar de la Hoya is going to fight Floyd Mayweather, Jr., again on September 13, but he's not going to let his May 3 date go un-used, instead opting to keep the date for a tune-up fight on regular HBO, most likely.

Oscar had discussed doing a fight on HBO instead of pay-per-view last year, post-Floyd, but most of us figured it wouldn't happen. Oscar says this is a thank you to the fans.

The field of possible opponents has been narrowed to three, according to Richard Schaefer, but he declined to name any of them.

Anyone have any guesses? Most guys are busy too close to May 3 for the fight to come off. I mean, even Alfonso Gomez has a fight lined up. Who's not busy?

1. Vernon Forrest: "The Viper" would obviously love to have this fight, and he's name enough for Oscar's reputation, plus he really was probably the Comeback Fighter of the Year in 2007. Beating Baldomir and Piccirillo isn't enough to put him on a P4P list or anything, but he dominated both fights and looked closer to the Vernon Forrest of old than he has in a long, long time. In this scenario, that would probably be a bad thing.

2. Ike Quartey: A rematch with Quartey, whom many feel beat Oscar in 1999, would garner at least a little interest. Ike isn't the fighter he used to be, but he stays in shape and can still go. Most of us felt he beat Forrest in 2006 -- actually, most of us thought Forrest's win was a crime -- and he did his best as an undersized foe for Winky Wright in late '06.

3. Carlos Baldomir: One more major fight for the Argentinian "Cinderella Man" before he goes on his way? Nobody wants to see it -- Baldomir's win over Judah and his destruction of the shot Gatti were all he had in the reserve tanks of a strange, well-traveled career. But the truth about Baldomir is that he's an iron-chinned, iron-willed, non-threat who doesn't have the speed to get at you or the power to hurt you.

4. Luis Collazo: A very poor man's Mayweather, but a southpaw. Hatton struggled with Collazo, but Mosley all but ran him over. Collazo is not an A fighter and not a B fighter. Really, he's a B+ fighter, and that's a tough position to be stuck in. You aren't so good that guys have to fight you, and you're too good for most of them to want to. I have to think he brings too much upset potential to the table.

5. Isaac Hlatswayo: He spent last year beating up on nobodies after Kendall Holt beat the piss out of him in 2006. Hlatswayo is an unknown in the States, hasn't fought here since the Holt bout, but he does bring a crap version of the 147-pound title to the table. This won't happen. I don't even know why I briefly considered it. But I'll leave it here for the world to see.

6. Jose Luis Castillo: I know it sounds a little out of whack, but so does Oscar-Pacquiao, and apparently that one was being seriously talked about. What's Castillo doing that he can't throw on another seven pounds and go make some money against Oscar? If de la Hoya really wants to take this fight down to Mexico City, Castillo would be a nice opponent. Look, the May 3 fight, whatever it is, is meant for Oscar to win just to get fresh and ready for a rematch with Mayweather.

We'll find out soon enough, I suppose. Until then, let the speculation run. Expect two to four rumored opponents that are no-gos, a rumor that it will wind up on pay-per-view, and scuttlebutt that Oscar is having trouble making weight.

What I think is nice about the fight in its current supposed and proposed state is that it's a big opportunity for anyone that gets the chance to fight de la Hoya. A win could make someone's career.

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