As 2013 comes to an end new fighters have emerged in the boxing world. Fighters that are looking to get big fights, big recognition, and big money. However, despite arguably being the best year of boxing since the late 90’s, a Cold War in the boxing world has derailed some fights from happening. Fights that will not only sell big but that will settle the differences in some of the weight classes of who the best in the division is. The Cold War between Top Rank/Golden Boy and HBO/Showtime is a complicated one, though so far it hasn’t hurt the sport. Both Top Rank and Golden Boy have put together the best fights that they can with their respected stable of fighters in 2013. Their success will likely draw an even bigger 2014 year but there are some fights that the fans are missing out on. Here are the best five fights that most likely will not be made because of the Golden Boy/Top Rank and HBO/Showtime feud.
5. Leo Santa Cruz (Golden Boy/Showtime) vs Guillermo Rigondeaux (Top Rank/HBO)
Earlier in the year this would have been Abner Mares vs Nonito Doniare. Both fighter’s derailed in 2013 as Donaire lost an unanimous decision to Rigondeaux in April and Mares was upset with a 1st round KO loss at the hands of Johnny Gonzalez. Santa Cruz and Rigondeaux have taken their respected spots as the two best super bantamweights in the world. Boxing fans would spark with excitement at the sight of these two facing each other to determine who the best super bantamweight in the world is.
4. Lucas Matthysse (Golden Boy/Showtime) vs Ruslan Provodnikov (Banner/Top Rank)
There are boxing fans looking at these two names together that have just gotten goose bumps. They aren’t the two best fighter’s in their divisions but they are two of the hardest hitting ones. Their exciting style would prove to bring fireworks inside of the ring. It may even be too dangerous to put them together. Matthysse vs Provodnikov would likely be a Fight of the Year candidate that would end in a brutal KO. More importantly the fans would love it and pay for it. Provodnikov isn’t bound to Top Rank but Banner Promotions has pretty much given him to the Top Rank stable and HBO. It’s not likely he’ll get his shot against a Golden Boy fighter anytime soon so this fight will probably never happen.
3. Gennady Golovkin (K2 Promotions/HBO) vs Peter Quillen (Golden Boy/Showtime)
This fight has more to do with the network issues. Quillen is with Golden Boy and bound to Showtime while Golovkin is with K2 Promotions but contracted to HBO. With Sergio Martinez’s career always on hold with injuries Golovkin and Quillen have become regarded as the two best middleweights in the world while Martinez has been recovering. Golovkin and Quillen have both said they want to fight each other next. While a network issue is probably easier to work out than a Promotion dispute, it still won’t happen. There are more complications to making the fight than it’s worth as both fighters are still trying to build their fan bases. While boxing fans would love to see the fight it wouldn’t draw enough money for the networks to work together on it.
2. Timothy Bradley (Top Rank/HBO) vs Danny Garcia (Golden Boy/Showtime)
Who wouldn’t want to see this? Two underdogs who continue to win with the odds stacked against them. Both guys have had both luck and skill help them to get to where they are at. Consider them the most underrated fighters in boxing. They are the Tim Tebow’s of boxing. If they were to fight though one of them would have to lose. Whose run would finally end if they fought? We may never get to know.
1. Floyd Mayweather (Showtime) vs Manny Pacquiao (Top Rank/HBO)
This is still obviously the biggest fight in boxing. If Pacquaio wins in great fashion against Rios later this week expect the boxing fans to once again start the Mayweather vs Pacquiao chants. The good thing about this fight is that all the network and promotional issues can be overcome if both Mayweather and Pacquiao truly want the fight to happen. Mayweather is boxing right now and he can make anything happen if he really wants it too. However, Mayweather has never acted interested in facing Pacquiao so if that doesn’t change this will always be the best fight in boxing that never happened.
There are other fights of course. This is just my list of great fights that should happen that likely won’t. If I wanted to get crazy with it, all of these matchups below are fights that the fans are missing out on because of the Cold War and HBO and Showtime issue. (I may miss some so don’t crucify me on twitter):