Rick Reeno of BoxingScene.com has the following:
BoxingScene.com was advised by two sources who are close to the situation that a deal has been reached for Floyd Mayweather Jr. to fight Juan Manuel Marquez. The proposed date is July 18 on HBO pay-per-view. The two sides have been negotiating for several weeks and the biggest roadblock was the catch-weight. The exact weight was not disclosed to me, but from [what] I understand the two sides agreed on a weight below 145 pounds.
I'd guess 143 or 144 for the weight, but all signals are going green for Mayweather-Marquez, like it or not. This will sell pretty well due to the intrigue of Floyd's return, but it will also sell well because it's another chance for an underdog Mexican warrior to be the guy that takes Floyd's "0." Never count out the rabid Mexican fans when it comes to PPV support, and Marquez is the biggest star they have left.
Now, this won't be some million seller or anything, and probably won't beat the 900K that Mayweather-Hatton did over here. I'd expect somewhere between 500-600,000 buys, though, and you know Golden Boy and HBO will go all out promoting, and Floyd will more than hold up his end making this an event.
I'll guarantee a few things, though:
- Mayweather won't fight Pacquiao if/when he beats Marquez, should Pacquiao beat Hatton. Arum can trash Floyd all he wants, but I don't think he'll be itching to put Manny in with him. Cotto? Yeah, I think he'd put Cotto in with Floyd.
- If Hatton and Mayweather both win, there's not a single solitary doubt in my mind they'll fight again. I'll watch because I watch everything of any value if it's presented to me, but while I certainly think there are enough casual fans and Hatton crazies (no offense, anyone) to make it a big success, it won't be what the first meeting was in any way, unless Big Floyd stayed on board with Hatton for the fight. Then you've got a great "24/7" on board for a fight where "Little" Floyd wrecks Hatton again.
- If Mayweather-Pacquiao can't be made, I don't think Mayweather will fight Cotto, who has a tough fight on his hands in June, too. But assuming THEY both win, no I don't think Floyd will fight Cotto. I don't think he has the guts. I'm not a Floyd basher, but I also don't have blinders on. Incredible talent, questionable desire. Nothing he's ever done really gives me the impression he'd fight Cotto. Period. That's not really a knock, it's just the way it is.
- If Floyd can't fight Ricky again, I don't have any clue what he'd actually be willing to do. He might just "retire" again and wait to be called out by someone he thinks he can handle.