By Rick Reeno
On December 8th, the boxing world might experience another heated round of dueling events between Golden Boy Promotions and Top Rank.
The two promotional companies are already going to head to head on September 15th in Las Vegas, with their respective events taking place within a two mile distance.
At the Thomas & Mack Center, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. will defend his WBC middleweight championship against Sergio Martinez in an HBO pay-per-view main event. At the MGM Grand, Saul "Canelo" Alvarez will defend the WBC junior middleweight title against Josesito Lopez in the main event of a Showtime televised quadrupleheader.
The September conflict has been a very tense situation and the temperature might continue to rise in the coming months.
Earlier this week, Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer advised BoxingScene.com that his company reserved the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, on December 8th, to stage a potential pay-per-view event.
On Thursday, Top Rank's CEO Bob Arum informed BoxingScene that eight division world champion Manny Pacquiao was definitely going to fight on December 1 or December 8.
On Friday, Miguel Cotto was unable to reach an agreement for a Pacquiao rematch in December - and the Puerto Rican superstar would later announce a planned return on December 1 against WBA "regular" junior middleweight champion Austin Trout, with New York's Madison Square Garden playing host.
With Cotto returning on December 1, Top Rank has shifted their focus to December 8th for Pacquiao's next fight - either against Juan Manuel Marquez or Timothy Bradley.
Golden Boy's headliner for December 8th has not been determined. Schaefer told BoxingScene the headline fight would depend on the outcome of Canelo's defense with Lopez.
If both sides stick to their guns, could we potentially see another head to head, this time with Canelo and Pacquiao?
Is Canelo the actual headliner being targeted by Golden Boy.....or is there a bigger surprise in store?
To make things more interesting, there are unconfirmed rumors circulating in the Las Vegas gyms that Floyd Mayweather Jr. - should he fight again this year - could potentially return on the date of December 8th. According to the current chatter in Las Vegas, Mayweather has not severed his working relationship with Golden Boy, who co-promoted the boxer's last six fights.
When I spoke to Schaefer on Friday, he wasn't concerned with the details of Pacquiao's next fight - but at the same time he was very firm with his position that Golden Boy had locked in December 8th long before Pacquiao's planned return was rescheduled. Pacquiao's return was originally being targeted for November 10th at the MGM Grand .
"We've had that [date] for a long time. We've had the date [reserved] on pay-per-view for a long time as well. We are working on a big event for December the 8th and I'm going to leave it at that for now ," Schaefer told BoxingScene.com.
"I'm not really worried about what other promoters are doing.....as I've said before and I keep saying that and maybe people don't hear me. I want to put together big events, big fights, exciting fights, so I can't really worry about what other people are doing. I'm very pleased, like I've said before, with the way things are going at Golden Boy, with the way our fighters are busy, [with the way our fighters] are making money. It's excited times to be a Golden Boy fighter, exciting times for us at Golden Boy and it's excited times to be a fight fan."
Tags: Manny Pacquiao , Floyd Mayweather Jr. , Saul Alvarez , Bob Arum , Top Rank , Richard Schaefer , Golden Boy Promotions