Well boys, it looks like the lightweight division will finally give welterweight a run for its money as the deepest division in boxing starting this June 28 when Manny Pacquiao moves up to face David Diaz for the WBC Lightweight strap. And that's just the beginning. 3 fights that will shape the immediate future of the lightweight division have been signed, and if you think about it, there's not a single fight that doesn't have intrigue all over it.
First off, Golden Boy announced that Joel Casamayor, the Ring/Lineal lightweight champion, is facing Juan Manuel Marquez, who's moving up from super featherweight, on September 13.
Second off, unified WBA/IBF/WBO champion Nate Campbell is facing his WBO mandatory Joan Guzman, who himself is also moving up from super featherweight. This fight is set probably for August.
Third off, former unified champion Juan Diaz is facing Michael Katsidis on September 6 in a fight that's really nothing more than a showcase of probably the two youngest and most exciting lightweights in the division, and a fight to see which one of them will move on to bigger fights with the veterans.
Arguably, Nate Campbell, Joel Casamayor, Juan Diaz, David Diaz, and Michael Katsidis could be considered the top 5 lightweights in the division. Without a doubt, Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel Marquez, and Joan Guzman are the top 3 super featherweights in the world. Unwittingly, Don King, Bob Arum, and Oscar de la Hoya have created one of the greatest 8 man tournaments ever, because people will demand to see the winners of these 4 fights get in the ring with one another.
I'll give you my prospective picks for these fights:
Pacquiao via TKO 10
Campbell via TKO 11
Marquez via UD
Diaz via TKO 10
Guys, I can't wait for these fights. The pieces have fallen into place as well as you could possibly imagine them. If my projected winners are correct, then the next series of fights I want to see are Pacquiao/Marquez III for what would be the WBC/Ring/Lineal titles, and Campbell/Diaz II for the WBA/IBF/WBO titles. And hopefully, the winners of those fights will face each other by the middle of next year for all the marbles at lightweight.
There's one legitimate superstar and legend (Pacquiao), two borderline Hall of Famers who would definitely secure their place (Casamayor and Marquez), a grizzled veteran who could establish himself as a Hall of Famer (Campbell), an underdog who could make himself into an unlikely star (D. Diaz), and two youngsters who still have their whole careers ahead of them who would use these wins as the foundation for what could be all-time great careers (J. Diaz and Katsidis). It really doesn't get any better than this.
__________________ Israel Vazquez....Super Bantamweight Champ....Super Heavyweight Heart
This man is my hero.
Last edited by SimpleJack; 06-26-2008 at 09:15 AM.