By Lem Satterfield
Top Rank Promotions CEO Bob Arum was impressed by the performance of unbeaten Philadelphia welterweight Mike Jones during Saturday night's second round stoppage of Raul Munoz of Topeka, Kan., at the South Philly Arena, marking the 28-year-old's 25th victory without a loss and his 19th knockout.
"Well, his performance was spectacular. I think that he's the best of the young welterweights out there. I think that he's better and that I would pick him over Andre Berto or Victor Ortiz or any of the young welterweights," said Arum.
"Mike Jones is a Philadelphia fighter and he knows how to fight," said Arum. "He has great, great technical skills, takes a very good punch, and he punches well."
Jones was coming of of consecutive wins in November of 2010 and this past Feburary over Jesus Soto-Karass were contested, respectively, on the undercards of a unanimous decision by eight-division and WBO welterweight titlist Manny Pacquiao over Antonio Margarito for the since-vacated WBC junior middleweight belt, and, a second-round knockout by then-WBA interim super flyweight king, Nonito Donaire over then-WBO and WBC king, Fernando Montiel.
Arum said that he will target Jones for a return to the ring in September, followed by an appearance perhaps on the November bout featuring eight division king Manny Pacquiao in defense of his WBO welterweight belt opposite Juan Manuel Marquez in Las Vegas.
"Mike Jones is going to fight on Top Rank Live on a Top Rank Live card on Fox in September," said Arum. "And if comes through that well, then he's going to be on the Pacquiao-Marquez undercard as a televised fight."
But when asked if a victory by Jones over his next two opponents, and one by Pacquiao over Marquez would lend itself to Jones being Paquiao's next opponent, Arum said, "That's a stretch."