In the space of a few weeks, Las Vegas has been treated to two of the biggest super-fights to ever be staged, with Floyd Mayweather Jr's 10th-round stoppage of UFC star Conor McGregor coming close to breaking PPV records and the world middleweight showdown between Saul Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin materialising into a bout which lived up to its billing of 'Supremacy'. However, with Mayweather happily retired, McGregor heading back to the Octagon and Canelo and Golovkin not pencilled in to compete in a rematch until Cinco de Mayo on May 5, the question remains: What will be the next clash to take place in the fight capital of the world?
Like the spin of a roulette wheel in a Las Vegas casino, it is effectively pot luck as to who will next receive top billing in Nevada, but that is not to say that we cannot make a logical prediction. Some fighters are ready for the next step of trying to succeed in the bright lights of Paradise, while others are going to be tempted to leave their familiar surroundings if it means trying to earn anywhere close to the figures which the aforementioned quartet have pocketed in recent times. With that in mind, let's assess some of the encounters which we could potentially witness between now and the start of May, when Alvarez and Golovkin are expected to do battle for a second time.
Anthony Joshua was originally pencilled in to face Wladimir Klitschko in Las Vegas on November 11 but due to the Ukrainian's retirement, plans were changed. Joshua now meets Kubrat Pulev in Cardiff on October 28, with the winner of that bout expected to head straight into a unification clash with either Deontay Wilder or Luis Ortiz, who square off seven days later in New York.
From a promotional aspect, Eddie Hearn will be hoping that Wilder can defeat Ortiz because should Joshua also beat Pulev, that would bring Wembley Stadium into play for May. However, Ortiz has the power to stop Wilder and if the Cuban prevails, expect arguably the two most dangerous heavyweights on the planet to meet in March or April with the IBF, WBA and WBC belts all being on the line.
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New York would represent another potential venue, but Hearn and Joshua are waiting for their Vegas debut and with Ortiz arguably providing the toughest test for the 2012 Olympic gold medallist out of all of the active heavyweights, the T-Mobile Arena or the MGM Grand has to be the setting.
Mikey Garcia is the best at 135lbs and Terence Crawford is the best at 140lbs. It is as simple as that. With Garcia having already stepped up to 140lbs to school Adrien Broner, there are not too many obstacles in making this dream bout take place in the near future. Garcia has business with Jorge Linares at lightweight but do not be surprised to see him back his ability and step up a weight division on a permanent basis.
Crawford has just become the undisputed champion at super-lightweight with the Omaha-native holding each of the four recognised belts, but now is the time to either take on Garcia or step up to welterweight. If Garcia chooses Linares, that leaves Crawford in a position where he can make a standard defence and bide his time, or ease into the 147lbs and try to become a world champion at yet another weight.
Either way, it's time for Crawford to became a regular in Vegas. Both Crawford and Linares were present at the weigh-in for Alvarez and Golovkin - who knows, maybe that fight could be in the offing?
With Andre Ward having defeated Sergey Kovalev on two occasions before announcing his retirement from the sport, the light-heavyweight division is well and truly up in the air. However, despite the pound-for-pound king hanging up his gloves, a number of high-profile bouts remain and while the likes of Dmitry Bivol require a few more fights to get to PPV level, Badou Jack and Adonis Stevenson are already there.
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It is going to be easier said than done to get Stevenson out of Canada to defend his WBC belt but if anyone is going to do it, it will be Mayweather Promotions. Jack has since vacated the WBA regular crown which he claimed against Nathan Cleverly, but there is every likelihood that the Swedish-born competitor will fight for a world title in his next outing. Stevenson has already been called out and if common sense prevails, the pair should meet in the Nevada desert.
Even before his victory over Kell Brook, Errol Spence Jr was already seen as the heir to Mayweather's throne in the welterweight division but now it is about putting together the fights which could potentially seem him skyrocket to the top of the sport. The American's profile still needs to be elevated but if he could emerge victorious from a clash with WBA and WBC king Keith Thurman, the boxing world would be at his oyster.
Thurman is currently nursing an elbow injury and all things considered, he will probably demand a return bout before showing a willingness to meet Spence, but it is a fight which will inevitably happen. Coinciding with Manny Pacquaio's decline, the duo are the best at 147lbs and although it is a questionable sell in Las Vegas given the current stages of their respective careers, a bout of this magnitude needs to take place on the West coast of the United States.
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Will Mayweather Promoters put a 22-year-old Gervonta Davis in with one of the most technically-gifted boxers in the history of the sport? Probably not, but we can dream, right? Davis is a superb fighter, carries the power to trouble anyone and a unification with Vasyl Lomachenko makes a lot of sense to a lot of people, just not his representatives.
Still, money talks and if Lomachenko is willing to give up a sizeable chunk of his purse to gain the opportunity to earn another belt, there still has to be a glimmer of a chance of this fight happening. Mayweather will want either Jack or Davis to take over his billing as one of the star attractions in Las Vegas and like with Jack versus Stevenson, this fight only takes place in Paradise.