By Jake Donovan
From the moment Floyd Mayweather revealed his 2014 itinerary to include fight dates on May 3 and September 13, the immediate question that sprang to mind - who gets next for the May 3 Showtime pay-per-view headliner at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas?
Speculation ramped up right around the time former 140 lb. titlist Amir Khan pulled out of a scheduled title fight versus then welterweight titlist Devon Alexander. Had the Brit stayed the course and went through with the scheduled fight last December, he stood a very good chance of being crowned a two-division titlist.
Instead, he watched Shawn Porter step in and collect the belt along with a career-best win.
The withdrawal didn’t mean much at the time, as Khan believed he had the May 3 date all sown up.
Then came Marcos Maidana.
The Argentine tough guy pulled off a major upset in mid-December, dropping and pummeling previously unbeaten Adrien Broner to the tune of a wide points win. The feat not only netted him a welterweight belt, but also created a major buzz to where Mayweather had a serious decision to make as to whom he would choose as his next opponent, and when to make that announcement.
So serious, that it’s been more than two months, with nothing more than worldwide speculation produced seemingly on a daily basis.
While the sport’s pound-for-pound and box-office king celebrates his 37 th birthday on Monday, the boxing world hopes to make a wish for him as he blows out his birthday candles – that wish being an official announcement for whom will stand opposite corner on May 3.
PREDICTIONS – WHO LANDS ‘MAY DAY’ ASSIGNMENT, AND HOW WILL WE KNOW?
“Khan will get the fight.”
- Damien Acevedo (Khan/Announced however it’s announced)
“ I think Khan ends up getting the fight and Floyd is just making him sweat it out. Floyd will announce it first via his Twitter account.”
- Ryan Burton (Khan/Announced via Twitter)
“ My hope is that Maidana lands the assignment (of the two choices offered, that is). My belief is that Khan was being punished for running his mouth early, and will be announced towards end of business day Monday, right before Floyd officially celebrates his 37 th birthday. The official announcement will come via Floyd’s verified Twitter account, but will be learned and leaked beforehand, with Boxingscene’s owner Rick Reeno and FightHype’s creator Ben ‘Hype’ Thompson posting at the exact same time.”
- Jake Donovan (Khan/Leaked on Boxingscene.com and FightHype.com)
“ I think Mayweather will fight Amir Khan. There will be rumors on Twitter, but he will control the final announcement and it will be released to the press as a circular.”
- Terence Dooley (Khan/Official Press Release)
“ Mayweather will announce his May 3rd opponent as Maidana as it seems to make the most sense in terms of Mayweather foe while waiting for a big fight to appear. I think Maidana's price point and demands will come in lower than Khan's and he may not be that far off from sales. Mayweather will announce it on Twitter and give FightHype the in depth interview about it.”
- Ernest Gabion (Maidana/Announced via Twitter)
“ Mayweather picks Maidana, announces via leak to FightHype.”
- Cliff Rold (Maidana/Leaked To FightHype.com)
“ I think Khan will get the call for May 3rd as it was speculated all along. I'm hoping to be wrong on this one but I expect us to see a "speed" related title for the fight for May 3rd. I believe Mayweather will announce his opponent via Twitter. One thing we should all know about Floyd is he's the boss and does this his way. Expect the news to come directly from him and a flood of stories coming after from every media outlet once a press release is also sent out afterwards.”
- Luis Sandoval (Khan/Announced on Twitter)
“ I predict Marcos Maidana will get the fight. If Amir Khan were selected as the opponent, this fight would have already been announced already. Plus Khan would've been tweeting about it already.”
- Francisco Salazar (Maidana/Announced however it’s announced)
“ No much room for @FloydMayweather in my opinion and the hunt will not end shockingly - enters Marcos Maidana! Seriously, Ruslan Provodnikov or Brandon Rios would have been equally compelling. Others are either locked (Bradley, Pacquiao, Garcia) or have already been beaten (Cotto, Alvarez, Marquez, Guerrero) or compete for the rival Network/Top Rank. And, yeah, it'll be tweeted in.”
- Alexey Sukachev (Maidana/Announced on Twitter)
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox