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Juan Manuel Marquez looking to fight two times in 2016, then retire

Juan Manuel Marquez isn't going to rush into anything, but he's hoping to fight again this year, and get one more world title shot.

Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

Juan Manuel Marquez, who hasn't fought since a May 2014 win over Mike Alvarado which was followed by knee surgery, says he's looking to close out his career with a pair of fights this year, one in May and one in September, preferably, and get one more world title fight before he hangs up the gloves.

The 42-year-old surefire Hall of Famer told ESPN's Salvador Rodríguez that he'd like to do the first fight in Mexico, then try to land a welterweight bout with Miguel Cotto, who has not fought as a welterweight since 2009.

"That's my wish -- to do two more fights," Marquez said. "Let's see if my body responds and things go in the right direction, I don't want to rush anything, but that is the idea. I have to say goodbye to boxing after 30 years of being an amateur and professional."

Marquez (56-7-1, 40 KO) is looking to fight as a welterweight only, and says he won't entertaining fighting any higher than that. His ultimate goal is to win a world title at 147 pounds, which would add to belts won at 126, 130, and 135. He also held an interim title at 140 pounds, which somewhat muddies his goal of winning recognized world titles in five divisions -- he would be the first Mexican fighter to do so -- but it's all about perception, really. If you don't count Marquez's belt at 140, and in all reality one should not, then he's really still trailing Erik Morales, who won belts at 122, 126, 130, and 140.

Getting Cotto (40-5, 33 KO) down to welterweight would be tough, too. He's 35 now, and while he may indeed still be able to make the weight comfortably, he's shown no desire to bend to anyone else's will at the negotiating table in this latter stage of his career. Trainer Freddie Roach isn't sure Cotto can get to the weight without sacrificing too much, but has suggested a 150-pound catchweight.

Cotto-Marquez would be an interesting novelty fight if nothing else, between two of the best fighters of a passing generation, but there appear to be serious roadblocks to getting it done. Plus, if the belt is Marquez's greatest concern, actually finding one could be difficult. The best bet, in a scenario where all of this happens, could be Manny Pacquiao beating Tim Bradley on April 9 to win the WBO welterweight title, then Pacquiao vacating to retire, leaving the WBO with a vacancy to fill, and whether fair or not, sanctioning bodies don't often turn down something like Cotto-Marquez to fill a title. But there are a lot of steps to even consider that happening.

The way Marquez talks about all of this, it seems just as likely that we have seen his last fight as it is that he'll fight again this year.

Do you want to see Marquez return? How interested are you in a Cotto-Marquez fight?

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