July 16, 2018
July 16, 2018
Manny Pacquiao

Action Images/Reuters/Lai Seng Sin

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1. Keith Thurman

Manny Pacquiao won a version of the welterweight world title for the fourth time against Lucas Matthysse. However, claiming only the WBA ‘regular’ championship does cast a cloud over the triumph. A win over the returning Thurman would not only unify the WBA title palaver but also further show whether Pacquiao has much left to offer at the elite level. With Thurman set to return from injury following 16 months out, catching ‘One Time’ now could be a deciding factor in this fight.

2. Vasyl Lomachenko

Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has expressed eagerness to make this showdown happen. Likely to take place at 140 lbs and for no world title this would be a fun fight for the fans between two masterful southpaw tacticians, it would be a case of Lomachenko’s momentum opposing Pacquiao’s professional experience.

Manny Pacquiao

3. Terence Crawford

Another battle between two stars, but two who hold titles in the same division. As Crawford looks to cement his name at the top of the 147lbs division a win over Pacquiao would provide this, whereas a win for the Filipino may just rank as one of the more impressive in his 69 fight career.

4. Amir Khan

A fight that has always had interest but never materialised. Both men are former stablemates and sparring partners with a long history, the match up was slated for April 2017 however negotiations broke down. Both fighters have always welcomed the fight and at this stage in their careers the victor could find themselves right back in the mix at welterweight.

5. Errol Spence

At age 39 if Pacquiao wanted to prove to fans he really can still compete at the highest level a win over Spence, regarded as the best welterweight on the planet right now, would more than do that. The undefeated IBF titlist looks to be not only the best 147lbs boxer in the word but possibly a pound-for-pound contender. A win for “Pac Man” would defy all odds, something he has made a habit of in his career.