Juan Manuel Marquez, nearly three months removed from his titanic sixth-round knockout of Manny Pacquiao in their fourth fight, is weighing his options for his next bout.
It's likely to be a fifth fight in the fall with Pacquiao, his great rival who still leads their legendary series 2-1-1. But Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, who co-promotes Marquez with Zanfer Promotions' Fernando Beltran, said there are other possibilities as well, and that Marquez is going to look at them.
The two promoters and Marquez, 39, spent time together in Mexico City last week discussing the possibilities -- and partying together.
"Marquez said he will continue to fight. That's what he wants to do," Arum said. "He thought about it after the Pacquiao fight and decided he wants to keep fighting. We had a lovely time together. They had to carry me to my room. A little too much tequila. Juan Manuel was a little loopy, too, but Fernando is like a lion. He drinks that s--- like it's water."
Before the liquid refreshments kicked in, they talked business.
"We discussed all of his options before we got drunk," Arum said with a laugh.
Arum said Marquez, who still holds a junior welterweight belt (although he beat Pacquiao at welterweight), said he will attend welterweight titlist Timothy Bradley Jr.'s defense against Ruslan Provodnikov on March 16 in Carson, Calif., and then also be ringside for the interim junior welterweight title bout between Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado, who meet in a rematch on March 30 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
"He wants to see Bradley with Provodnikov and he wants to see Rios and Alvarado," Arum said of Marquez. "And then we'll have a discussion on what his options are."
After watching those fights, Marquez and his wife will travel to Macau for an April 6 card, Arum said. According to Arum, Pacquiao is also planning to attend the show. If Marquez decides that he wants another Pacquiao fight, there's a good chance the fighters can work out the outline of a deal while in Macau, Arum said, even though the fight probably wouldn't take place until September.
"Marquez said he's interested in fighting all of them, but he'll know who he is interested in more after watching them fight," Arum said. "We never discussed money. All he said was, 'I know I can make more money fighting Pacquiao than against the other guys,' and that was the extent of the monetary discussions.
"We had a nice evening together. Whatever he and Manny want to do, I'm for it. If it's another Pacquiao-Marquez fight, fine. If it's that they fight somebody else, fine."