Is a fifth fight between legendary rivals Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez coming in 2015? Despite saying several times that he's not interested, Marquez may have good reason (and many millions more good reasons) to take the fight, and his promoter Fernando Beltran is in Macau to watch Pacquiao-Algieri tomorrow night.
Fightnews.com talked to Beltran, who said that Pacquiao holding the WBO welterweight title could be the big incentive for Marquez, who wants to claim a world title in a fifth weight class.
Marquez (56-7-1, 40 KO) fought just once this year, handily defeating Mike Alvarado on May 17 in Los Angeles. The 41-year-old Mexican star is still a top fighter at 140, 147, or any catchweight in between, and obviously has always meshed wonderfully with Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38 KO).
The two first met in 2004 as featherweights, with Marquez recovering from three knockdowns to outbox the more limited Pacquiao, resulting in a draw. It would be four years before they met again as super featherweights, with Pacquiao scoring a split decision win in 2008. In 2011, Pacquiao took a majority decision win in a 143-pound catchweight bout, and then in 2012, Marquez brutally knocked out Pacquiao at the end of round six in a welterweight fight.
Marquez has been adamant that he wants to leave the rivalry there, with his hand raised and, in his mind, proving he was the superior fighter. But there's a lot of potential money out there for Pacquiao-Marquez V, and it's an easy sell. The fighters both have big fan bases, and their history of great fights speaks for itself.
So will Marquez go back on his word in order to chase that fifth world title? (Actually, it would be his fourth, as his title at 140 was just an interim belt, but Marquez counts it, so that's what matters here.) The money will be there. The opportunity could be there.
There is one other factor, though, and that's Pacquiao potentially moving down to 140 pounds for his next fight. His fight tomorrow night with Algieri is for the WBO welterweight title, but is being fought at a 144-pound catchweight, and Team Pacquiao has had the idea of moving down to 140 if Manny looks good. That could result in two things: Pacquiao fighting for the now-vacant WBO junior welterweight title, and potentially, Marquez getting a fight for the potentially vacant welterweight title -- perhaps a rematch with Timothy Bradley?
Do you think we'll see Pacquiao-Marquez V in 2015?