Brandon Rios wants Juan Manuel Marquez
By Jim Dower: Fresh off his grueling 10th round TKO win over WBA lightweight champion Miguel Acosta last Saturday night, the new WBA champion Brandon Rios is now gunning for a fight against 37-year-old legend Juan Manuel Marquez for his next fight. Rios, 24, likes the idea of fighting Marquez and thinks he would have a good chance in beating him. However, Marquez has bigger plans and is hoping to get a third fight with Manny Pacquiao.
At the very least, Marquez will opt for a bigger named opponent than Rios if he’s unable to get a fight with Pacquiao next. There’s speculation that Marquez will be signing with Top Rank, the same promotional company that Pacquiao fights for. Marquez’s contract with Golden Boy Promotions expired on Sunday and this leaves him a free agent. Golden Boy Promotions can match whatever over that is made by another promoter. However, the chances don’t look good that Marquez will decide to stay with them, not with a potential big money fight against Pacquiao possibly available to him should he sign with Top Rank.
Rios looked good at times in the Acosta fight, but took way too much punishment in en route to getting the win. Even in the 10th, Rios was still getting hit hard with shots that were whip-lashing his head around. He showed no head movement and didn’t block many punches in the fight. Rios naturally wants to take on the biggest name available to him, but the way that he fought against Acosta, it’s difficult to foresee Rios having any success against a quality fighter like Marquez. This might be a replay of Marquez’s recent beating of Australian slugger Michael Katsidis. Rios would do well to avoid Marquez and go after a more beatable older fighter, someone like Marco Antonio Barrera, Rios could probably beat Barrera, but only after taking a great deal of punishment. Barrera won’t bow out without inflicting a lot of damage on Rios.