Ten potential opponents for the returning Marcos Maidana

Marcos Maidana vs Floyd Mayweather

Shaun Miller

Former two-weight world champion Marcos Maidana is set to make a dramatic return to boxing following a four-and-a-half-year retirement.

A huge offer to make a comeback has been laid on the table by Premier Boxing Champions head honcho Al Haymon. It’s expected Maidana will accept.

The Argentine would certainly need a warm-up fight to shake off the ring rust. But after that, there are a plethora of options open to ‘Chino’ this year.

Provided he can still make welterweight, Haymon has already cornered the mark in that division. Four current world champions compete under the banner and will be targeted for Maidana in the future.

But let’s be realistic, Maidana has ballooned in weight during retirement. The 35-year-old would likely need to campaign at 154 or even 160. A plus side to this is the fact it gives Maidana the chance to become a three-division ruler.

So here’s a rundown of who could be in the crosshairs:

WELTERWEIGHT

Manny Pacquiao – The current WBA champion and the favorite should Maidana be able to shed the weight.

Keith Thurman – ‘One Time’ is the ‘super’ titleholder with the WBA. Any collision would be a pure firefight and fan-friendly to the end.

Errol Spence / Mikey Garcia winner – The pair meet this year. Whoever comes out on top will be the IBF champion.

Amir Khan – The pair have met before. The Briton shaded a fascinating contest in 2010. A second fight would be a big seller.

SUPER-WELTERWEIGHT

Jarrett Hurd – Holding two belts at 154, Hurd is a Haymon fighter, and dependent on the level Maidana can reach, a solid option.

Kell Brook – Eddie Hearn would have no problem putting a big offer on the table due to Maidana’s notoriety in the UK.

Erislandy Lara / Brian Castano – Lara has plenty of pedigree at 154, whilst Castano would be an all-Argentine affair.

MIDDLEWEIGHT

Gennady Golovkin – Maidana facing off against one of the biggest names in the sport sounds like a fairytale. Any future offer solely depends on how Maidana looks in his comeback fight.

Canelo – Possibly a few fights down the line and only if Maidana can prove himself a force at 160.

Jermall Charlo – One of PBC’s current stars at the middleweight limit and an easy fight to make.

RANKED ON PROBABILITY

  1. Jarrett Hurd
  2. Erislandy Lara
  3. Amir Khan
  4. Manny Pacquiao
  5. Kell Brook
  6. Keith Thurman
  7. Spence / Garcia
  8. Jermall Charlo
  9. Gennady Golovkin
  10. Canelo

MAYWEATHER

One fight that certainly won’t be on offer is a third fight with Floyd Mayweather.

‘Money’ is said only to be considering a return with Manny Pacquiao and has already defeated Maidana, albeit in entertaining contests, twice.

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