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When was the last time Floyd Mayweather Jr. fought an elite Argentinian boxer in his prime?
Bernard Hopkins humor aside, Sergio ‘Maravilla’ Martinez proved last night that in boxing, age doesn’t matter. The 35-year-old boxing late bloomer from Oxnard, California by way of Buenos Aires, Argentina scored what was perhaps 2010’s knockout of the year when he dropped top pound-for-pound list mainstay Paul Williams in front of 5,502 dropped jaws at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey in their highly anticipated rematch.
Martinez took advantage of his opponent’s bad habits when he landed a crushing overhand left that landed flush on Williams jaw in the second round that sent the tall and lanky fighter from Augusta crashing to the canvas like timber (click here to watch the video). Not really sure what the ref was thinking when he started counting, but the punch left Williams momentarily unconscious with his eyes open in a scary scene reminiscent of Manny Pacquiao’s KO win over Ricky Hatton. The end came at the 1:10 mark of the round.
After the victory, the 5’10 160-pounder Martinez dismissed the possibility of fighting Pacquiao stating that the Filipino is too small for him. Pacquiao weighed-in at 144 in his last fight against Margarito which was fought at a catch-weight of 150. Incidentally, Martinez’s fight against Williams was also fought at a catch-weight of 157. Back in June, Martinez vacated his 154 belt after difficulties of making the weight and opted concentrate on fighting in the middleweight division which at this point in his career is his natural weight class. The 5’6 Pacquiao on the other hand could not even max out the welterweight limit of 147 during weigh-ins and has never weighed-in more than 145 in any of his fights which supports Martinez’s logic that Pacquiao is simply too small for him.
Martinez did express his interest in fighting another top dog in Floyd Mayweather Jr. Mayweather is naturally bigger than Pacquiao and is slightly smaller than Martinez at 5’8 and has campaigned at 154 in the past. “He is a great fighter and I would love to do it,” Martinez said about the prospect of fighting Mayweather. If Mayweather is indeed unwilling to fight Pacquiao, Martinez provides a great contingency plan for him and would definitely silence some of his critics that have called him a 41-0 fighter that cherry-picks his opponents.
With Martinez calling him out and negotiations with Pacquiao’s camp not going anywhere, it only makes sense for Mayweather to fight Martinez next. This fight not only makes sense, it will make cents- millions of it. If it is to happen though, Mayweather will have to move up and fight a bigger guy like Pacquiao has done against his previous opponents, but I think it’s about time Mayweather gave his fans a real epic fight against a top opponent who is still in his prime. Will he be up to the challenge? What you say Floyd?
Dennis “dSource” Guillermo is a freelance sports journalist. He can be reached through email @ email@example.com.
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