By Lem Satterfield
Three-time world champion, Erik Morales, of Tijuana, Mex., has all but resurrected his boxing career, this, years after having been the last man to defeat eight-division titlist, Manny Pacquiao, who has since gone 13-0, with eight knockouts and earned WBO welteweight and WBC junior middleweight belts.
"We are planning to have an HBO pay per view with Erik Morales on July 30," said Golden Boy Promotions CEO, Richard Schaefer, to BoxingScene.com. "We are currently looking at different opponents, and, so, we will see what's going to happen."
The 34-year-old Morlaes (51-7, 35 knockouts) is coming off of a spirited, April 9, majority decision loss to hard-hitting, 27-year-old former interim WBA junior welterweight titlist, Marcos Rene Maidana (30-2, 27 KOs), that some ringsiders thought Morales won.
Prior to that, Marquez had scored a fifth-round knockdown on the way to December's unanimous decision victory over 39-year-old Dominican Republican-born Francisco Lorenzo (36-9, 16 KOs), of Irvington, N.J., for the WBC's silver light welterweight title.
Morales has twice been stopped by Pacquiao, in the 10th, and, third rounds, respectively, since defeating him by unanimous decision in March of 2005.
But Morales had earned his third straight victory by defeating Lorenzo, and now, looks to be in line for a potential rematch with Maidana or a fourth bout opposite Mexico City's 37-year-old, five-time, three-division champion, Marco Antonio Barrera (67-7, 44 KOs).
Another consideration for Morales would be 28-year-old southpaw WBO and WBC interim lightweight titlist Robert Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 KOs), who is coming off of an April 9, victory over Australia's hard-punching Michael Katsidis (27-4, 22 KOs) that earned Guerrero his fourth, and, fifth career title belts over his third weight class.
The bouts against Maidana, Barrera or Guerrero would take place on July 30 in Las Vegas or Southern California, according to Schaefer.
Morales lost two out of three fights to Barrera during a trilogy that reached a legendary status which, for Mexicans, rivals the one between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. Barrera is coming off of February's second-round knockout of 43-year-old Jose Arias (17-2, 11 KOs).
"One of the fights that has been offered to Morales is a potential fourth fight with Marco Antonio Barrera," said Schaefer. "Another possibility is a rematch with Marcos Rene Maidana. So these are the two leading contenders."
Guerrero already was a two-time IBF featherweight and one-time IBF super featherweight champion, and became the mandatory challenger to 37-year-old WBO and WBA king, Juan Manuel Marquez (52-5-1, 38 KOs), who rose from a third-round knockdown to stop Katsidis in the ninth round of their November bout.
Guerrero won for the 13th straight time during a run that includes nine stoppages, having last suffered defeat by a December, 2005 split-decision to Gamaliel Diaz, whom Guerrero stopped in the sixth round of their June, 2006 rematch.
"One which I think would be very intriguing as well and which would be a very good, big fight for Erik Morales would be involving Robert Guerrero," said Schaefer. "I think that that would be a terrific fight."