- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
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Amir Khan or Marcos Maidana? Marcos Maidana or Amir Khan?
They are who it is down to for welterweight champ Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s next fight on May 3 (Showtime PPV) -- unless he pulls a shocker out of his hat. Rumors circulate daily as to who will get the fight. Fight fans are going crazy about it and media is on the daily watch.
It does seem a bit later than usual for Mayweather to announce his opponent. For some May fights he has announced his opponent as early as December.
Whatever is going on behind the scenes it is clear Maidana and Khan both want the fight and both have said so. Over and over. Of course, I am on record strongly believing that Maidana deserves the fight far more than Khan because of their recent performances inside the ring, especially his dismantling of Adrien Broner to win a welterweight title in December.
Whatever happens, Golden Boy chief executive Richard Schaefer told me on Saturday that no deal was done yet for either guy -- contrary to those rumors -- and he also shot down the persistent rumor that the guy who didn’t get the fight with Mayweather would be facing Broner on the pay-per-view undercard.
“No, not at all,” Schaefer said of Broner facing either Maidana or Khan on the card. “Floyd’s fight is not done either. ... I am waiting on Floyd but have a pretty good idea on what's going to happen and what the undercard will look like.”
In any event, Team Maidana tried to set the record straight for the moment and issued a statement on Sunday.
“Considering that rumors have been circulating in the last few hours addressing a ‘done deal’ fight between WBA welterweight champion Marcos Maidana and WBC champ Floyd Mayweather Jr., we want to clarify that those versions are not accurate,” the statement said.
“Maidana is well aware that he is indeed a firm candidate to face Mayweather Jr. next May 3rd, but the fight is far from being made or confirmed as other fighters are still also in the mix. Hopefully, we will have news in the next few days but, in the meantime, we don’t want to confuse the fans or the boxing press. Maidana, of course, wants to unify titles with Mayweather, but for now we will have to wait.”
Wait like the rest of us.