By Jake Donovan
With three fights left to go on his current six-fight deal with SHOWTIME, undefeated pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather could have traveled in a number of different directions for his next ring appearance. Instead, he opted to revisit old business, if not for the sake of closure.
At least that’s the working theory behind his September 13 rematch with Marcos Maidana, which will air live on Showtime Pay-Per-View. The two once again meet at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the same venue where Maidana pushed the reigning welterweight and super welterweight king to the brink before coming up just short in their May clash.
Maidana aggressively campaigned for the sequel, with the best news of his career coming with a phone call from manager Sebastian Contursi informing that he landed the assignment.
Maidana was so pleased to hear the news that he never thought to ask why Mayweather agreed to the fight. All he knows is that he gets one more shot at beating the very best fighter in the world today.
“I don't know the details of how the rematch came about. I received the call from my manager Sebastian Contursi letting me know I have the rematch.”
Maidana 35-4 (31KOs) earned the first fight thanks to a strong four-fight win streak that included a 12-round beatdown of previously unbeaten Adrien Broner last December. Few believed the Argentine brawler stood much of a chance against Mayweather (46-0, 26KOs), who has made a career out of feasting on and picking apart aggressive fighters.
However, Maidana forced Mayweather to sweat out the decision, the closest anyone has believed the unbeaten future Hall of Famer has come to losing since his first lightweight title fight with Jose Luis Castillo way back in 2002. Mayweather came back to win the rematch by fighting on his terms, which many suspect will be the case come September.
It’s a theory to which Maidana can relate, but not necessarily agree.
“I think I got the rematch because it was a close fight,” Maidana believes. “He probably wants to prove that he can beat me outright.”
His team has a different theory as to why the fight is happening.
“I truly believe he was forced to give us the rematch,” suggests Robert Garcia, Maidana’s head trainer. “He had no other options. There were no other name fighters that could help him sell the pay-per-view. I believe he had no other option but to fight us again.”
In the end, all that really matters to Maidana is that he is once again getting in the ring with the best fighter in the world, with another chance to prove he’s beatable.
“I don't care (why the rematch came about),” Maidana insists. “My job is to just go in there and beat him.”
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene.com, as well as the Records Keeper for the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a member of Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox