Ricky Hatton is convinced that he is just two fights away from an improbable rematch with the American idol Floyd Mayweather at Wembley in front of 100,000 people next spring.
Hatton was knocked out by Mayweather last December in a World Boxing Council welterweight title fight in the 10th round in Las Vegas. According to the three judges at ringside, he had won two rounds on one scorecard and just one round on the other two scorecards.
It was Hatton's third fight in 12 months in Las Vegas and he had firmly established himself as a popular fighter and an increasingly lucrative commodity in the American fight market. Sadly, there were signs that his status as the king of the box office in the fight games capital had started to affect him.
"I would like a rematch and I know that Floyd is interested," Hatton said yesterday. "It's a fight that would attract a big crowd and it's something that I really want.
"I know that I have to prove myself in my next two fights and I'm sure that in about a year's time, a rematch with Mayweather can be made.
"The referee Joe Cortez is one of the best in the world, but he had a terrible night and he warned me about everything. He ruined my rhythm and I need rhythm.
"I got my tactics right in the first six rounds, but after that I was a bit eager but I'm amazed how many experts have said I got it wrong," continued Hatton, who returns to the ring against Mexico's Juan Lazcano at the City of Manchester stadium on 24 May.
In theory, Hatton will fight Paulie Malignaggi, the International Boxing Federation light welterweight champion, probably at Madison Square Garden in New York in October. If he wins that fight, he will meet Mayweather, according to the head of Golden Boy Promotions, Richard Schaeffer.
However, Malignaggi has to first beat Lovemore N'Dou on the Hatton undercard in Manchester and Oscar De La Hoya has to beat Steve Forbes on 3 May in Los Angeles and then lose to Mayweather in a rematch on 20 September.
It sounds crazy, but Schaeffer and his partner De La Hoya have changed the way that fights are made and promoted, and it all could happen.
"I've spoken to Floyd's manager Al Haymon and he has confirmed that Floyd is interested in another fight with Ricky," confirmed Schaeffer. "This fight could happen and I think Ricky has a good chance."Reuse content