Nobody seems to be too convinced retired pound for pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr. will remain so, a full fifteen months on from the five-weight world title holder’s last fight against Andre Berto.
Despite numerous statements of intent to stay out of the ring, Mayweather fuels the media fire with statements like, ‘if the money was right’ and ‘you never know’ when asked about a return.
In a previous article, WBN put forward a second clash with a now older and wiser Canelo Alvarez as the perfect opponent for Mayweather, potentially next May 2017 in Las Vegas, although there are possibly a couple more lucrative options the ‘Money’ man could consider.
1. Conor McGregor – Payday ($150-250m)
Switching codes would never be an option for Mayweather, but with McGregor’s boxing background a fight could have some merits. McGregor would certainly have to brush up on his skills in order to convince the boxing public he could challenge Floyd as judging by some leaked sparring sessions, McGregor is shy of the very top level. A win over a top welterweight, someone in the ilk of Amir Khan or Shawn Porter, may be enough a chance for ‘The Notorious’ one.
Ruling out a full McGregor move to the Queensberry Rules, Mayweather could seriously bump up his PPV numbers – possibly even double or triple them, pushing well into nine figures should he allow some sort of MMA rules to be implied in the fight.
2. Gennady Golovkin – Payday ($100-200m)
Mayweather would be hard-pushed to get anywhere near his Pacquiao earnings after such a long drawn-out build up to their meeting in May 2015, although a move up to middleweight would bring massive intrigue with it, especially if Floyd was to take on the biggest star out there in Golovkin.
Pay-per-view would all be pushed by a willingness to see if Mayweather can achieve what would seemingly be the impossible against the world’s biggest puncher and would once again see his bank considerable account swell even further, no matter the eventual outcome.
3. Manny Pacquiao – Payday ($80-150m)
The first fight did more harm than good to another mammoth purse for these two legends of their generation, but would still command at least a guaranteed $50m purse for Mayweather.
With pay-per-view hitting somewhere in the region of 1.5 to 2 million, give or take after such a high-profile dud in their original fight, Mayweather would be pushing towards nine figures plus once again.
4. Canelo Alvarez – Payday ($75m)
A return with Canelo brings a certain interest with it as the Mexican was a very green 22 years old at the time of the first bout in 2013. Three years on, and Canelo remains untouched since the Mayweather loss and has grown into a strong and powerful man that would pose new dangers for the near 40 year-old.
5. Kell Brook – PayDay ($50m)
Heading to the UK could be a lucrative option for Mayweather and would definitely have the Brits scrambling to Wembley Stadium and paying huge amounts for tickets.
A purse upwards of $50m could be negotiated through deals either side of the Atlantic, and with interest in the UK at a high level, Sky Sports Box Office revenue would considerably help to make sure Mayweather wouldn’t be disappointed in choosing to fight Kell Brook on the back of his hearty Golovkin performance.
If and when Mayweather does decide to go for that magical 50, the boxer-turned-promoter need look no further than one of these five fighters should his hoard full of cash need a top-up in the near future.
Boxers six-to-ten would be hard-pushed to nail down a fight as Amir Khan, Keith Thurman, Errol Spence, Terence Crawford and Danny Garcia, all around the guaranteed $40m mark, would certainly be overlooked should Mayweather aim for the more serious money.
All purses are estimates. Article pictures by Naoki Fukuda and Lawrence Lustig