COMMENTARY | Floyd "Money" Mayweather (45-0, 26 KOs) and Danny "Swift" Garcia (27-0, 16 KOs) each picked up a big win on Saturday, September 14 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mayweather showed Saul "Canelo" Alvarez what boxing at the highest level is all about, while Garcia turned back the hard-hitting Lucas "The Machine" Matthysse.
After any Mayweather fight, the immediate question becomes, "Who's next?" Well, with Garcia's big win, he defended his title belts, asserted himself as the undisputed top fighter in Junior Welterweight division, hushed up the critics who declared his challenger a favorite to win the fight, and, yes, pushed himself into the pole position to land a mega-fight against Mayweather.
While fans hailed the addition of the Garcia vs. Matthysse fight to The One Pay-Per-View -- it was an excellent and unexpected co-feature -- it wasn't done out of the goodness of Mayweather's heart. It was done to sell more PPVs, of course, and also to create demand for his next opponent.
It's long been a staple of boxing business to put future opponents on the same card as each another, building up hype to a potential match between the winners. Make no mistake about it, that's why Garcia vs. Matthysse was included on the Mayweather vs. Canelo bill.
With Canelo Alvarez in the rear-view mirror, the last "obvious" opponent for Mayweather was removed. Mayweather defeated the top guy at Junior Middleweight, and he's already beaten the next-best guy at Welterweight, Juan Manuel Marquez. Other big names and top contenders such as Miguel Cotto and Robert Guerrero have also been recent victims.
In other words, it's time to face the best guy at Junior Welterweight, and that's Danny Garcia, who, yes, was conveniently featured in the Mayweather vs. Canelo event. If Matthysse had won the bout, he'd be in the same position, but Garcia was able to stand his ground against the Argentinean slugger, bust his eye, knock him down, and battle his way to a hard-fought victory.
Garcia would move up to Welterweight for the fight, which also neatly fits Mayweather's recent track record of alternating fights between the 147- and 154-pound divisions.
He moved up to face Cotto in May 2012, took his title, dropped back to Welterweight to cruise past Guerrero and defend his title there, and then moved back up to Junior Middleweight to take on Canelo. By doing so, he's able to retain his supremacy and his titles, in two divisions at once, while maximizing the potential options he has in the future.
Nobody else makes half as much sense as Garcia, unless Mayweather is secretly planning a move up to the Middleweight division to take on Sergio Martinez in 2014. Timothy Bradley is viable, but only if he defeats Juan Manuel Marquez, and, even then, he's promoted by Top Rank, which is a near-instant fight killer. The winner of the December Devon Alexander vs. Amir Khan bout is another option, but neither man has the standing that Garcia does right now.
And, of course, let's not look past the most important point of all. A press conference that places Angel Garcia, Danny's father and trainer, and Floyd Mayweather Sr., Mayweather's father and trainer, in the same room at the same time would be worth the price of admission alone.
Philly fight fans, get ready, I'd wager that Swift has a date with destiny, and Mayweather, for 2014.
Jake Emen runs the boxing news website ProBoxing-Fans.com, where you can find breaking news stories interviews, rankings and more. You can also follow Jake and ProBoxing-Fans.com on Twitter,@ProBoxingFans.
- Sports & Recreation
- Danny Garcia