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Malignaggi deserves another opportunity: If not Diaz, will it be Timothy Bradley?

Will Diaz agree to give Malignaggi the rematch that is warranted? If not, how about Timothy Bradley, Devon Alexander, or Zab Judah? After the Hatton fight last November, all of them would've stepped up to the plate in a NEW YORK MINUTE.

Just when you think life has treated you unfairly, as former IBF super lightweight champion Paulie Malignaggi believes was the case this past Saturday night in Houston, TX when he lost a controversial decision to Juan Diaz, a positive outcome can sometimes manifest from even the most dreadful injustice the world has to offer.

If anything was truly unanimous following the debatable verdict of Saturday's showdown, it is that Malignaggi rightfully deserves another opportunity to prove himself as one of the best super lightweights in the world on a big stage against a world class opponent. The rematch between Malignaggi and Diaz would seem to make the most sense at this time, as both boxers gave tremendous accounts of themselves and would still appear to have unfinished business.

Given the competitive nature of the fight and the controversy surrounding the political circumstances and business-related endeavors of the fight, one must wonder if Golden Boy Promotions is all that eager to rematch one of their emerging stars against the 28 year old Brooklyn native who made matters just a little too close to call for their expectations and comfort zone.

According to the Examiner, Malignaggi could be getting a title shot against WBO super lightweight champion Timothy Bradley in the near future. Bradley is promoted by Gary Shaw and fights almost exclusively on HBO rival Showtime's television network, so Malignaggi may be crossing back over to Showtime in order to make that fight happen. While such a match up may be suitable to Malignaggi, it might turn out to be one of those high-risk, low-reward type of deals.

Although Bradley is a titlist who boasts an undefeated professional record, there are not too many fans outside of boxing's inner circles who are familiar with the name Timothy Bradley - such a name happens to belong to a pretty good boxer, one of the best super lightweights in the world, who also possesses better than average hand speed.

WBA super lightweight king Amir Khan of England is another potential big stage opponent for Malignaggi, but he presents the same political complexities that Malignaggi was confronted with when he faced Diaz in Houston. In all likelihood Malignaggi would have to go over to England to challenge Khan, which would also present him with a title shot as well as a substantially large payday, but the same risk of being treated unfairly by the judges once again resurfaces.

Last but not least, Malignaggi's promoter Lou Dibella immediately went on record demanding that a rematch with Juan Diaz take place in New York. Should Team Malignaggi fail to make such a request a reality, how about another fight that this observer believes has the potential to generate revenue in the New York area? Paulie Malignaggi vs. Zab Judah! This reporter believes such an event would generate a vast live gate at Madison Square Garden in New York City and could serve as nice payday for both combatants.

Malignaggi has the gift of gab. Judah is no stranger to trash talking, either. Can you image what the promotional build up for that one?? Taking into account his inactivity as well as his track record in the big fights as of late, Judah's name still remains marketable to the general sports public.

Hopefully somebody gives Malignaggi another opportunity against a credible opponent, on either HBO or Showtime, and remembers to leave judge Gale Van Hoy out the equation!

Bradley vs. Campbell result changed to No Contest!

The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) has officially overruled the result of the August 1 WBO super lightweight title fight between champion Timothy Bradley and former lightweight champion Nate Campbell. The bout was originally ruled a third round TKO in favor of Bradley, when the ring side physician declared that Campbell could not continue following the end of the third round due to a cut that was caused by an accidental headbutt.

The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) has officially overruled the result of the August 1 WBO super lightweight title fight between champion Timothy Bradley and former lightweight champion Nate Campbell. The bout was originally ruled a third round TKO in favor of Bradley, when the ring side physician declared that Campbell could not continue following the end of the third round due to a cut that was caused by an accidental headbutt. The commission has changed the result to a No Contest. Campbell's promoter Don King issued a press release regarding the CSAC's decision to change the result, also revealing his plans to congratulate California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in the process:

“I only asked for justice for my fighter Nate Campbell, and that is what I received from the California State Athletic Commission today,” promoter Don King said. “I applaud the members of the commission for righting this wrong, and I have a phone call in to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to congratulate him on this important decision. “This is a victory for the boxers, the sport and the great state of California upholding the rules of justice and fair play. The fairest outcome of all is the one they chose where neither fighter’s record is blemished from a match that was halted early due to an accidental clash of heads."

According to reliable sources, Bradley and Campbell, who were in attendance at the CSAC hearing, nearly came to blows at the conclusion of the hearing. Gentlemen, save your strength and energy, put the rematch together, and finish your business inside the squared circle.

Diaz outpoints Malignaggi in Houston

Debatable decision, of course. Controversy surrounding Gale Van Hoy's scorecard, but this reporter does not see any controversy in the verdict.

Juan Diaz W12 Paulie Malignaggi... As I was lounging in my Fairfield Inn hotel room at the after party of a wedding that took place on Saturday, I still managed to catch the fight between Juan Diaz and Paulie Malignaggi in its entirety on HBO. Juan Diaz won a debatable unanimous decision over Paulie Malignaggi, in a fight that took place in Diaz's hometown of Houston, TX.

Visibly infuriated with the decision, Malignaggi launched off into a tirade against the politics of boxing, Golden Boy Promotions (company that promotes Diaz), and the judges in his post fight interview with Max Kellerman.

The three official ringside judges were Raul Caiz, Gale Van Hoy, and David Sutherland. Caiz and Sutherland scored the bout 115-113 and 116-112 respectively. HBO's unofficial ringside judge Harold Lederman finished with a final tally of 115-113 in favor of Malignaggi. scored the fight 114-114; there was no clear winner from this reporter's judgement. Perhaps what drummed up the most controversy was not necessarily the verdict itself, but Van Hoy's inexplicable score of 118-110 in favor of Diaz. Anybody who scored this fight in the neighborhood of 115-113 for either fighter was within the correct ball park. Those who are crying robbery are acting as though Malignaggi practically pitched a shut out over Diaz and unjustifiably lost the decision.

Did the outcome of this fight truly rank amongst some of the greatest robberies of all time such as Lennox Lewis's draw against Evander Holyfield, Pernell Whitaker's draw against Julio Cesar Chavez, Shannon Brigg's decision win over George Foreman, and going back even further in history, Joe Louis's ridiculously corrupt split decision over Jersey Joe Walcott in 1947? No - not even close!

While there were certain rounds in which Malignaggi wisely used his reach advantage and ring generalship to outbox Diaz from the outside, there were also rounds in which Diaz engaged Malignaggi at close quarters and did more damage on the inside than many observers gave him credit for. There were about six rounds in which Malignaggi boxed really well, and six rounds in which Diaz punished him inside. This was really a case of Malignaggi performing much better than he has over the past three years and Diaz not looking as sharp or impressive as one might have initially predicted. The result was in fact debatable, but this observer still finds it difficult to label it a robbery.

At the end of the day both combatants will come away from this experience with their stocks elevated, as they battled hard and fought their hearts out which made for a crowd pleasing affair. Whenever there is a fight in which both pugilists are giving such tremendous accounts of themselves in a fiercely contested match, networks are going to want to bring them back for future shows and fans are going to want to pay to see them fight again.

Could Top Rank's loss become Golden Boy's latest gain?

As a result of Pavlik's withdrawal from his October 3 middleweight title defense with Williams, are we going to see Hopkins vs. Williams at 170lbs?

In the latest of a series of battles between rivaling promotional companies Top Rank Inc and Golden Boy Promotions, Golden Boy is attempting to take advantage of middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik's withdrawal from his October 3 title defense against Paul Williams.

Listening to Williams' promoter Dan Goossen's objective to reschedule a fight for Williams in October with or without Pavlik in the opposing corner, Golden Boy C.E.O. Richard Schaefer was asked if welterweight champion Sugar Shane Mosley would be willing to face Williams for the welterweight championship of the world.

Taking into account that Williams last fight against Winky Wright in April took place at the middleweight limit of 160lbs, and he has not fought at the welterweight limit since his one round destruction of Carlos Quintana in June of 2008, Schaefer believes that Williams would be making a serious compromise to shed the excess poundage, which could seriously impede his competitive chances in a fight against Mosley at 147lbs. According to an article on, Schaefer fancies the idea of putting Williams against former middleweight and light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins.

Afterall, Hopkins has not seen action in the ring since October of 2008 when he handed Pavlik his first professional loss by means of a lopsided unanimous decision. In just a matter of months Hopkins will be 45 years old; clearly the Executioner from Philadelphia is not getting any younger. Why not pit one of sport's living, long-lasting legends against the sport's most feared and avoided competitor in what would be an intriguing cross roads fight?

In order to make such a fight happen, Schaefer must first confirm with Hopkins whether or not he can still make 170lbs, whereas Williams and Goossen will decide whether or not Williams can effectively go up as high as 170lbs for a fight of such magnitude. This reporter certainly would not mind seeing Hopkins vs. Williams. Mosley, who has been unable to secure a fight since his welterweight title winning effort over Antonio Margarito this past January, remains out in the cold without any opponents lined up for his next fight.
photo courtesy: HBO

Pavlik vs. Williams off for now!

World middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik has withdrawn from his October 3 title defense against former WBO welterweight champion Paul Williams, due to a knuckle injury he suffered on his left hand in training. Dates that both parties are currently considering to reschedule the event are November 21 and December 5. The bout was scheduled to take place at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ.

According to ESPN's Dan Rafael, Williams' promoter Dan Goossen was completely unaware of the Pavlik's decision to withdraw from the fight. Goossen informed ESPN, ""As you are aware, we've just learned of Pavlik's decision to cancel the press conference and thus the fight and we will evaluate where we go from here." HBO and Top Rank promoter Bob Arum, who represents Pavlik, have already approved the rescheduled date of November 21, but Goossen has not yet confirmed his fighter's next step amidst yesterday's sudden postponement. On that same evening, Goossen will be representing super middleweight Andre Ward in his title challenge of WBA super middleweight champion Mikkell Kessler on HBO rival Showtime's Super Six Classic Tournament.

Goossen is well aware of the fact that Kessler vs. Ward and Pavlik vs. Williams could very well interfere and compete with one another as the respective boxing telecasts will likely coincide. Taking that into consideration, this reporter believes there is a better than average chance that Pavlik vs. Williams will be rescheduled for December 5. Stay tuned for further details.

Chris Arreola gets his title shot against Vitali Klitschko, but is he ready for it?

On September 26 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko will defend his title against unbeaten Mexican American Chris Arreola. The fight will be televised on HBO World Championship Boxing.

Staples Center previously played host to two of Klitschko's biggest bouts. In June of 2003, Lennox Lewis stopped Klitschko, on the basis of a deep laceration over Klitschko's left eye caused by a punch, after six wildly entertaining rounds of championship action. Almost a year later at the same venue, Dr. Ironfist would finally seize the vacant the title belt, following Lewis's retirement from the sport in December of 2003, with a eight round stoppage of Corrie Sanders.

Arreola remains relatively unproven at the world class level, as his biggest victories have come against Chazz Witherspoon, Travis Walker, and Jameel McCline. Walker was able to knock Arreola down in the second round of their fight, but Arreola rose from the canvas to knock Walker out and emerge victorious by way of a 3rd round TKO. The brash, vulgar speaking challenger is now set to face Klitschko for the WBC title, in what will be his first world title fight. Is the unbeaten yet unproven 28 year old California native ready to accept such a demanding task? Will he be as physically prepared as he will be mentally for the fight?

Arreola has never faced an opponent the ilk of either Klitschko brother - Vitali or Wladimir (who is the universally recognized heavyweight champion of the world). Arreola can punch well with both fists and has a puncher's chance, but that's the case with most heavyweights. Taking into account Klitschko's height and reach advantages, coupled with Arreola's tendency to enter his fights over weight, this reporter believes he's going to have a difficult time finding the target on Klitschko.

One must also consider the durability factor between these two heavyweights. Klitschko and Lewis exchanged bombs for six brutal rounds, with neither pugilist succumbing to the punishment that was being dished out and received in that fight. Arreola on the other hand, found himself on the floor at the hands of Walker, who is not exactly an elite level world beater!

In any case, boxing has a quite a schedule in store for this fall. Between Mayweather vs. Marquez, Pavlik vs. Williams, Klitschko vs. Arreola, and Pacquiao vs. Cotto all taking place within the next three months, the end of the summer will only mark the beginning of some sensational world class boxing competition.

Tune in to HBO World Championship Boxing on the evening of September 26 for Klitschko vs. Arreola!

Pavlik vs. Williams on October 3!

The fight will take place at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City and will be televised live on HBO. Considering the lack of the marquee names and legitimate challenges at middleweight (Arthur Abraham recently ascended to super middleweight ranks), Pavlik vs. Williams would appear to be the most ideal match up at the 160lb limit.

Atlantic City is familiar territory for Pavlik, who won the unified middleweight championship in October of 2007 via 7th round TKO of defending champion Jermain Taylor at Boardwalk Hall. Pavlik would successfully make his first title defense with a 3rd round TKO of the sadly over matched Gary Lockett, also at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City in June of 2008.

Rebounding from the first loss of his professional career, a one-sided unanimous decision to former two division champion Bernard Hopkins last October, Pavlik was last seen making the second defense of his middleweight championship in February, scoring a 9th round stoppage of Marco Antonio Rubio in his hometown of Youngstown, Ohio.

Williams recently won a lopsided unanimous decision over former super welterweight champion Winky Wright, illustrating that the middleweight limit would seem to be an effective fighting weight for the Aiken, South Carolina native. The middleweight title bout is sure to be a treat for HBO subscribers, as the world champion makes his first significant title defense against the man deemed as the most avoided fighter in sport.
photo courtesy: The Sun

Assuming his position as the underdog, Malignaggi is eager to shock Juan Diaz!

Just twenty six months ago, Paulie Malignaggi was celebrating the biggest victory of his career, along with his first world title, when he outpointed Lovemore Ndou by a wide margin at Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT. Since that fateful June night, Malignaggi would see his career take a gradual decline with title defenses that were less than stellar, including a return match with Ndou across the pond in England in May of 2008, resulting in a much closer and questionable split decision for the Brooklyn native.

Malignaggi was last seen in action on November 22, 2008, when he was dominated and stopped in eleven rounds by defending champion Ricky Hatton when his trainer that night, Buddy McGirt, mercifully saved his fighter from taking any further punishment. The former IBF junior welterweight titlist looks to make his return to the ring an impressive one when he takes on former lightweight titlist Juan Diaz on August 22 at the Toyota Center in Houston, TX.

In an interview conducted by Thomas Newton at Eastside Boxing, Malignaggi stated that he plans to revert back to his old ways that made him successful and put on a boxing clinic. Malignaggi said in the interview, “Well you’re going to see the old Paulie Malignaggi back in action. We have got a great game plan on August 22nd, and I am ready for anything baby bull has to offer. We have got a great team and I am going to put on a boxing clinic.”

This reporter is quick to note that Malignaggi has terminated the services of his trainers following each of his two defeats and proceeded to hire a replacement. Since the Hatton fight, Malignaggi has once again done some house cleaning to his team with the implementation of a new trainer - Coney Island native Sharif Younan.

Following his loss to Miguel Cotto at Madison Square Garden back in June of 2006, Malignaggi was enthusiastic with the replacement of McGirt as his trainer, believing that McGirt would take him to another level and help him beat the best in the world. After his humiliating loss to Hatton, however, Malignaggi would claim that he and McGirt simply did not click and is now training under the close eyes of Younan. Out with the old and in with the new, I suppose.

Alhtough Malignaggi refuses to look past the challenge in front of him, he acknowledges all of the big names that are currently campaigning in and around the 140lb weight class. "Well, there are a lot of great fighters in that got Floyd Mayweather, Shane Mosely and Juan Manuel Marquez moving up. Therefore, there are definitely big names in this division. We will weigh up our options after Diaz on August 22nd," said Malignaggi. Fans will get the chance to see how well Malignaggi is able to rebound from his latest set back in less than a couple weeks.

Diaz vs. Malignaggi will headline HBO Boxing After Dark on August 22.

Floyd Money Mayweather: "I open my mouth the widest. That's why I'm eating the most!"

Courtesy of Mayweather Promotions/Golden Boy Promotions and

In an interview conducted by SupaKen of Russ Parr Morning Show, undefeated former five-division world champion Floyd Mayweather, Jr. shared his thoughts about his upcoming fight with lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez, what he valued most about his time away from the sport, and his love for money. Mayweather stated, “The best thing with me being retired was spending time with my children. These years of my children’s life are so valuable. What I like to do is just be the best father that I can be. Not just be the best at boxing, but to be the best father I can be.”

Responding to inquiries made by Marquez that he was going to dig into Mayweather’s rib cage, Mayweather wasted no time in referring to his undefeated record and success in the squared circle. “Thirty nine have tried and thirty nine have come up short. Tune in September 19. It’s going to be one hell of a fight. You’ve got the best pound for pound fighter in the world versus Mexico’s number one fighter.”

While the boxing world is well aware of Mayweather’s love for money, one can only hope that the champion has returned with a desire to prove against the best available opposition that he, not Manny Pacquiao, is the best pound for pound fighter in the world today. Nicknamed Money May for his distinction as one of the richest athletes in the world in any professional sport, Mayweather has been quoted as saying that he boxes because he wants to not because he needs to. Answering questions as to why he chose to return to ring eighteen months after announcing his retirement in May of 2008, Mayweather explained, “Well they say that Floyd Mayweather came back to the sport because he needs the money. Who doesn’t need three or four hundred million? If I can get three or four hundred million more in a recession, than absolutely.”

Should Mayweather defeat Marquez next month, the world is eager to see Mayweather in anticipated showdowns with the likes of welterweight champion Shane Mosley as well as the winner of the fight between pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao and WBO welterweight titlist Miguel Cotto. In May ESPN's Brian Kenny asked Mayweather why he chose Marquez, the lightweight champion, over Mosley who is the current champion in his weight class of welterweight. Mayweather boldly replied to Kenny that Mosley has five losses on his record, including a loss to Cotto in November of 2007, and that he is not a PPV attraction.

When world class fighters face off against one another in competition, there is always going to be a winner and a loser! In order to go down in history as one of the greatest of all time, you are expected to face the best available opponents in your era. Between Cotto, Mosley, and Margarito, those are three elite level world class fighters who have beaten up each other [Cotto outpointing Mosley, Margarito stopping Cotto, Mosley dominating and stopping Margarito, etc] over the past couple years, but nobody has managed to defeat Mayweather. While those are the irrefutable facts, this reporter would still like to see Mayweather in rivalries with the aforementioned fighters in order to prove to the world that he is still the best fighter in the world today, as many of us believed he was prior to his latest retirement from the sport, and maintain that he is one of the greatest boxers of all time.

Is the WBC Diamond championship necessary?

WBC President Jose Sulaiman is instituting a brand new belt in his organization, which is going to be called the WBC Diamond belt. The new belt is being implemented with intentions of add more marketability and recognition to the bouts taking place between fighters who are competing at catch weights.

For example, former welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr and current lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez will be meeting on September 19 at a catch weight somewhere between 140lbs and 147lbs [the official weight still has yet to be disclosed]. WBO welterweight champion Miguel Cotto will face super lightweight champion and pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao on November 14 at a catch weight of 145lbs. Both fights feature the sport's currently active highest grossing super stars, but there is no world title being contested in either one of those bouts.

According to Sulaiman, the belt will revitalize modern boxing by adding greater appeal to the non-title catch weight bouts which he claims have not been a complete success. Should the winners of the Mayweather vs. Marquez and Cotto vs. Pacquiao fight meet each other next year, particularly if that fight is between Mayweather and Pacquiao, a Diamond Belt will not be necessary to market or promote such an extravegent event.

Casual sports fans outside of the boxing community are well acquainted with Mayweather and Pacquiao and they realize that a fight between the two champions is the biggest fight that can be made in boxing. In the middle of a free-falling economic recession, without the presence of a title belt, Pacquiao and Oscar De la hoya, fighting in a non-title fight at welterweight, showed the world the PPV numbers as well as the live gate that they were able to generate in their showdown on December 6.

One would argue that fighters will still have to pay a sanctioning fee to fight for the Diamond Championship, which translates to more money for the WBC, but not necessarily money that the fighters want debited from their purses. Should a Diamond belt champion accept a fight in a traditional eight weight division, then that belt will not even be necessary and will not even require a sanctioning fee to be paid to the WBC.

While the 18 Karat Gold Mold, Emeralds, Diamonds, and Italian Ferreri leather make for an exquisite eye catching championship title belt, it remains questions whether or not it is needed a remedy to improve the image of the sweet science and add marketability to the average occasional catch weight boxing match.

Mayweather remains confident for September 19 fight; undaunted by rib injury!

Upon uffering a rib injury in training back in June, Floyd Mayweather was forced to withdraw from his July 18 fight with lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez, but Mayweather had a speedy recovery and the bout has been rescheduled for September 19.

Clearly aware of the rib injury, Marquez has declared that his game plan consists of a body attack fully intended to hurt and dismantle Mayweather. "I know where he's been hurt and I'm going for it," said Marquez. "He is vulnerable now and I will take advantage of his weakness with a body attack that emphasizes two things-the right and the left."

Undaunted by setback in training that ultimately led to the postponement of the fight, Mayweather clearly has not lost any confidence in himself. Preparing for his newly rescheduled date with Marquez, Mayweather has been updating his Twitter page at and had a bold reply for his Mexican challenger.

Marquez says hes goin after my ribs but theres no weakness in MONEY MAY. Only
ribs he'll b diggin n2 will b at Outback after I take him down.

Should the fight be as memorable as the trash talk, boxing fans should be in for quite a spectacle at the MGM Grand on the night of September 19. Mayweather vs. Marquez: Number One/Numero Uno will be televised live on HBO Pay Per View.

photo: rankopedia