Who Is Floyd Mayweather’s Next Opponent?

A look at the usual and unusual suspects for Mayweather's return to the ring May 4.

Josh Helmuthby Josh Helmuth

Boxing's most polarizing figure is back in the headlines once again.

After serving a two month jail stint that ended in August, Floyd Mayweather announced he would be returning to the ring for two dates in 2013: May 4 and Sept. 14.

The last time we saw Mayweather he scored a victory in what was his toughest fight to date against Miguel Cotto. Now he's back and looking to further his legacy with another dominating performance.

Let's take a look at four men who have been mentioned or rumored to face Mayweather

Juan Manuel Marquez
After his shocking KO victory against Manny Pacquiao last December, Marquez is inline for another huge payday if he decides to continue fighting. A rematch with Mayweather would be the biggest.

Aside from Mayweather and Andre Ward, Marquez is arguably the most skilled tactician inside the ring, but we cannot forget how Mayweather toyed with him four years ago en route to a unanimous decision victory.

The odds of this bout actually being made are very slim but because of Marquez's impressive KO against Pacquiao you'd have to at least entertain the idea of it.

Devon Alexander
On Feb. 6 Mayweather tweeted "The negotiations for my fight are almost done. The front runner is IBF Champion Devon Alexander. It'd be a unification bout at welterweight." As you can imagine this caused quite the stir. Alexander vs. Mayweather is cleary not what fans want to see.

Alexander is no slouch when it comes to pure boxing but he certainly isn't in the same league as someone like Mayweather. After a dismal performance vs. Tim Bradley, Alexander has won three fights in a row against tough men (Maidana, Matthysse). In this case however, it doesn't matter. Alexander hasn't looked as stellar as expected in big moments and it would be no different against Mayweather. Next.

Robert Guerrero
When Guerrero moved up to the 147 pound division, many of us didn't pay much attention. After his 12 round war against Andre Berto last November, Guerrero walked away with two things: a victory and the attention of the boxing world.

Guerrero charged into the bout, guns blazing as he knocked Berto down in the first two rounds of the night. He ate huge shots, continued to move forward while proving to all of us that he is truly a man to be reckoned with.

After the victory it was widely rumored that Guerrero was indeed next inline to face Mayweather. Obviously Mayweather tweeted otherwise, but I suspect that rumor simply is a ploy created to give Mayweather an advantage in whatever contract talks he's had with Guerrero and his people.

As for the matchup itself, you'd have to give the edge to Mayweather if both men stepped into the ring. Guerrero has switched gears by becoming a pressure fighter at this weight class and he is a formidable opponent but he would likely be overmatched by a faster, superior boxer.

Canelo Alvarez
By our estimation Alvarez is the toughest possible opponent on this list for Mayweather. He's got the size, power, chin and style to give Mayweather a wealth of problems.

Aside from his bone crushing power, Alvarez has continued to improve his defense and counter punching. The unbeaten Mexican star destroyed Josesito Lopez back in September and is looking to face boxing's A-list fighters.His vicious body attack alone is enough to make Mayweather fans take notice.

Alvarez has been linked to rising star Austin Trout for a date in March but I'd expect him to possibly face Mayweather on the aforementioned September date.

No matter who Floyd Mayweather decides to fight in the coming months one thing is for certain; the entire world will be watching.

Zac Hutton was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY where he, his fiancée, and their dog currently live. He enjoys sports (especially violent ones), music and cargo-pants. When not at home, he can be found singing for My Uncle The Wolf. He also has an extensive and impressive collection of hats.

Photo Credit: Getty