Juan Manuel Marquez vs Jeff Horn on tap for 2017?Written by Lee Cleveland
Following Manny Pacquiao's highly debatable decision loss to Australia's Jeff Horn in the latter's hometown of Brisbane, an old PacMan rival might want a shot at the new WBO welterweight champion.
Enter comebacking 43 year old Juan Manuel Marquez.
Ignacio "Nacho" Beristain, Marquez's trainer, recently issued a subtle call out to Horn.
"I've been watching [Marquez in training], so I do not think it's crazy of me [to want the fight with Horn], he's been looking super good," Nacho told ESPN Deportes.
Marquez, of course, is supposed to have a tune-up later this summer in Mexico against an opponent yet to be named.
In his most recent bout in May 2014, Juan Manuel Marquez survived a few tense moments to soundly defeat Mike Alvarado (then 34-3, 23 KOs) via a unanimous decision in an entertaining scrap. With the dominant victory, perhaps one of JMM's most impressive, Marquez became the mandatory challenger for then-WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao but didn't enforce his status. In fact, since their fourth meeting in 2012, JMM, who rallied to win that bout via a one-punch knockout, has adamantly refused a fifth fight with Manny.
"Look, I could see Horn being a possibility, but I'm focused on the fight coming up right now," Marquez, who is preparing for his first bout in over three years, explained.
Is Juan Manuel looking to add salt to Manny's womb by defeating Manny's latest (albeit controversial) conqueror?
"Whether I'm going to face [Miguel] Cotto in December or even this fight with Horn, the first thing I need to do right now is get through this fight so I can figure out how high I can reach."
First things first
It is apparently written in the Pacquiao vs Horn contract that Jeff would have to give Manny an immediate rematch in the event he orchestrated the upset. And yes, Manny is interested and don't expect him to change his mind.
Marquez vs Horn is only a possibility if Horn wins the rematch with Manny or if the latter decides to retire straight away.
Beristain explains Pacquiao vs Horn
Nacho was complementary of Manny and hinted a more focused version of PacMan would have performed much better.
"Pacquiao failed himself, I think he is very involved in his political career and wasn't training as he should have been, although he is still a great fighter," Nacho said.
He also addressed Horn's size:
"Against Horn, the right technique would be imposed, although he is a fighter who climbs to the scale at welterweight and then comes into the fight as a middleweight."
The zany Marquez Comeback fight saga
For the last 30+ months, Marquez and Nacho have been in limbo about Juan's future in boxing.
During a December 2014 interview on ESPN Deportes, JMM broke the news that a knee injury may force an untimely retirement. And several months later, Nacho hinted to FightHype.com JMM was done with boxing:
"... We don't want for Juan Manuel to lose all that credibility and [respect for] the great job he's done all of his career and just... throw it in the garbage can with just one fight," Beristain told FightHype in March 2015.
But since then, Team Marquez has presumably bantered several possible next-fight opponents including Miguel Cotto, Ruslan Provodnikov, Kell Brook, Amir Khan and Terence Crawford.
Would a comebacking Marquez defeat Jeff Horn?