Manny Pacquiao, once considered by many to be the best boxer on the planet, has officially fallen from grace and his much talked about match up with Floyd Mayweather is now never going to happen.
There has been a lot of talk of super-fights in MMA recently, be it Georges St. Pierre vs Anderson Silva, Jon Jones vs Anderson Silva, or the up coming Jose Aldo vs Frankie Edgar. These kind of fights are much talked about in MMA but history has shown us they often don't end up happening. Randy Couture or Brock Lesnar taking on Fedor Emelianenko were matches demanded by MMA fans in the late 2000s but never came to fruition because of promotional politics.
Those match ups however pale in comparison to the super-fight that boxing just lost last night. Manny Pacquaio vs Floyd Mayweather Jr would have been the biggest boxing event since the Mike Tyson era, the most bought PPV in recent memory, and truly great sporting moment. But that is lost forever because of promotional posturing and taking the idea that the match up will always be there for granted. Now those hopes lay at the feet of Jaun Manuel Marquez, broken and defeated.
Boxing was presented with the rare chance of the two best fighters in the world during a prolonged stretch of time were close enough in weight to face each other and they failed to capitalize on it. MMA is faced with a similar situation with Jon Jones, Anderson Silva and Georges St. Pierre. Silva, widely considered to be the best fighter in MMA, is sitting in between Jones and St. Pierre in weight and while he is approaching the end of his career Silva's skills are still very sharp. What makes this even better for MMA fans is all three fighters are in the same promotion, removing some of the hurdles and road blocks that normally stop super-fights from happening.
The UFC needs to strike on one of these super fights while they still have this chance and the lesson of the Pacquiao knockout appears not have been lost on UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta who tweeted this moments after Marquez put Pacquiao to sleep.