RingTV.com first repored that Peterson was going to be mentioned as a possibility by Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, who told RingTV.com that he sees Peterson as “a great opponent for Manny Pacquiao” if the fight with WBC welterweight titleholder Floyd Mayweather Jr. is not made.
Mayweather is facing a 90-day jail sentence that is slated to begin on Friday, a development which threatens his announced plan to return to the ring on May 5 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Mayweather was targeting Pacquiao.
Peterson rose from two third-round knockdowns to salvage a draw with former WBC welterweight titleholder Victor Ortiz in December of last year, scored a 12th-round stoppage of Victor Cayo in July, and then edged Khan after having been floored in the first round.
“I think that Lamont Peterson is a great opponent for Manny Pacquiao if the Mayweather fight doesn’t happen, in my opinion. That is, if Lamont really doesn’t want to take the fight with Amir Khan,” said Roach of Peterson, who stands nearly four inches taller than Pacquiao at 5-foot-9, and entered the ring against the 5-10 Khan weighing 155 pounds.
“Because he’s [Peterson] a big guy, he had trouble making 140, and he came into the ring against Amir weighing more than 147. I like the action-packed fight that he fought with Amir Khan. I mean, that was tremendous. So I’m looking for good fights for all of my guys.”
Peterson has been offered a career-high $1 million by Golden Boy Promotions for a rematch with Khan, who has cited poor officiating and scorecard descrepancies among the reasons he has appealed to the IBF and the WBA to overturn Peterson’s win or else to order an immediate rematch.
“Lamont Peterson is a world champion. He beat Amir Khan,” said Koncz of Peterson, who earned $650,000 to Khan’s $1.1 million. “Bradley and Peterson are the second and third options for Manny in my mind.”
Arum said, however, that the decision will be one of consensus.
“Everybody will have their input. Freddie will have his input, myself, [Top Rank Inc. matchmaker] Bruce Trampler, and Manny, and then we’ll decide,” said Arum.
“We’re coming down the home stretch for Manny. We have two years left and four fights. So every one of these fights is a compelling fight.”
If Bradley or Peterson is not selected for Pacquiao, don’t be surprised to see a Bradley-Peterson II. For Arum, Bradley and Bradley’s manager, Cameron Dunkin, have all said that they would be up for negotiating a return bout with Peterson.
“I don’t think that Marquez is an option right now, although Arum will present that to Manny,” said Koncz, who seems to favor a rematch with Cotto for Pacquiao. “In my opinion, I think there’s only three choices, but that’s all up to Manny.”
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank Inc.
Photos by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org