Sergio Martinez has backed Roman Gonzalez as the successor to Floyd Mayweather Jr. but says the sport needs more fighters that can take it to the next level.
Mayweather transcended boxing for the last ten years of his career spanning almost two decades and is still mentioned in conversations regarding today’s big names despite being retired since September 2015.
Former middleweight king Martinez, who was linked to a clash with Mayweather at the tail end of his career, praised the 39 year-old whilst addressing rumors of possible fights with MMA star Conor McGregor and current 160 pound force Gennady Golovkin.
“I think boxing really needs more fighters like Floyd Mayweather as it is now a strange time in boxing,” Martinez exclusively told World Boxing News.
“There is no doubt Floyd has been one of the smartest of all boxers, not only in the ring but when it was time get the suit and be a businessman to negotiate his fights.
“I think a fight with Conor McGregor is representative of another good deal for Mayweather. After all, he is known as ‘Money’ and that fight makes money.
“There is also the possibility of a fight with GGG, but I believe that while Golovkin remains a very dangerous puncher with his fists and is such a hard man, a fight with Mayweather will not happen.”
On the current pound for pound climate, of which WBN has witnessed three changes at the top already this year, Martinez sees the powerful Nicaraguan Gonzalez as boxing’s new figurehead.
“I still believe that ‘Chocolatito’ is the best and over the years can cement his place at the top of pound for pound rankings,” he predicted.
“Behind Gonzalez and Golovkin in second is Andre Ward. I think it’s a fair position at number three for Ward in the pound for pound rankings after his win over Sergey Kovalev.”
Asked about the recent resurgence of former foe Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. – a fighter Martinez chased for some time before eventually beating in a thriller, the 41 year-old Argentinian answered: “Julio Cesar Chavez Junior has all the conditions to be a champion again. You only need to focus on that goal and be professional to get there, so let’s see if he can do it.”