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Knockout Nation: Khan Breaks Down Malignaggi, Ortiz Outboxes Campbell, Hopkins Wants Calzaghe and Bute, Mayweather-Pacquiao Update

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Malignaggi Has No Answers for Khan

Before his hometown NYC crowd last night (May 15), Paulie Malignaggi (27-4, 5 KOs) was thoroughly beaten by a well prepared Amir Khan (23-1, 17 KOs), who took out his Brooklyn foe with a dominant 11th round TKO.

From the outset, Malignaggi had no answers for Khan’s superior speed and power. Amir was able to consistently get off first with his stiff jab, and even at times with lead left hooks and straight rights.

By the 4th round, Khan was also making Malignaggi pay for trying to come inside, clipping him with a head-turning right uppercut. In the following round, Paulie’s offense was hampered further by Khan’s longer reach, and the Brooklynite was punished with multiple flush right and left hooks to the face.

The 8th and 9th rounds were complete whitewashes for Amir Khan. In the former round, the UK fighter began attacking more with impunity, as the light-hitting Malignaggi (5 KOs in his career) could do nothing to keep his opponent off him. Khan could not miss Malignaggi’s head with any of his shots, finding a home for the jab, left uppercut, and hooks with both hands. In the latter stanza, Paulie continued to get busted up with stiff left jabs and hooks, and the Magic Man’s face was swollen all over with a mouse under the left eye.

Following another brutal 10th round, referee Steve Smoger asked Malignaggi if he wanted to come out for another round. Despite Paulie’s affirmations, Smoger refused to let the bout continue until the ringside physician had a thorough review. Once completed, Malignaggi was advised he had one more round to make a stand.

With no power to turn the tide, Paulie Malignaggi absorbed more hooks as he tried to land a desperate home run shot. A Khan left hook caused him to careen into the ropes, and Smoger stopped the bout as Malignaggi feebly threw weak punches in retaliation.

The 11th round TKO made Amir Khan’s U.S. debut a successful coming out party, and now Golden Boy’s most promising young star turned his attention to his remaining division rivals.

“A lot of people put the pressure on me to fight Maidana. I’ll fight Maidana next,” Khan told HBO’s Max Kellerman. “Let Bradley fight Alexander, and the winner of that fight face me in the finals…let’s do it! I will not leave 140 until I’ve unified the titles.”

In spite of all his prefight trash talk, Paulie Malignaggi made no excuses for his loss and gave Khan full credit.

“Amir just fought a really good fight. [He gave] lots of angles, kept changing distance, that was the plan for me [but] Amir was quicker,” Malignaggi admitted. “Amir’s younger, he had that youthful enthusiasm and I give him a lot of credit.”

On the undercard, Victor Ortiz kept his poise for 10 rounds and was able to easily outbox a now slower and fading Nate Campbell.

At 38 years old, Campbell was unable to chase down Ortiz, who circled for the majority of the bout and countered Campbell with hard straight lefts and flurries. Scorecards for the bout read 100-89 twice, and 99-90.

 

HBO did much to sell the junior welterweight division, doing a video package focusing on its talented young guns Timothy Bradley, Devon Alexander, and Marcos Maidana. In addition, the network covered the division’s other top fighters in Juan Manuel Marquez, Juan Diaz, Ricky Hatton, and Andriy Kotelnik. From commentator Max Kellerman’s own mouth, HBO looks to be putting their hopes on this division to carry their boxing coverage before and following Mayweather-Pacquiao.

 

 

Bernard Hopkins Looking for Another Match

Following the abysmal April PPV encounter that was Hopkins-Jones, there was no one clamoring to see Bernard Hopkins in the ring ever again. Even Golden Boy CEO Richard Shaefer told the press he’d like to see the Executioner hang it up. But Hopkins is ignoring these retirement suggestions, and is reportedly seeking bouts with Lucian Bute or Joe Calzaghe.

Last month, Bute destroyed Edison Miranda with a 3rd round TKO. Many consider Bute the top super-middleweight in the world despite the ongoing Super Six tournament. Joe Calzaghe beat Bernard Hopkins via controversial split decision in 2008. Calzaghe announced his retirement that year after beating Roy Jones and hasn’t fought since.

Hopkins was in attendance last night but did not disclose whether serious talks have begun for either proposed fight.

Calzaghe was in the States for Mayweather-Mosley, and in remarkably good shape for someone 2 years into retirement, which fueled speculation he was considering a comeback bout.

If the Welshman does come back, more than likely it would be for the Super Six winner or Bute. Calzaghe was adamant following the Hopkins bout that he would never fight Bernard again. And fans were not demanding a rematch either of the foul-filled bout.

On the other hand, Bute may fancy the Hopkins showdown since his biggest super-middleweight opponents are tied up with the Super Six for the next year. The big question would be the weight, as Hopkins has been campaigning in recent years at light-heavyweight.

Until someone decisively beats him, Bernard Hopkins looks like he won’t even consider retirement.

 

 

Mayweather-Pacquiao Reps Hope to Prevent Previous Media Fiasco

Many fans and media still have a bitter taste in their mouths after the most anticipated fight in boxing history fell through in February over disagreements on Olympic style drug testing.

Following dominant victories for Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather in their last fights, both camps have begun quiet preliminary talks to resurrect the fight.

Bob Arum recently spoke to ESPN and advised that both sides have vowed to iron out their differences behind closed doors without regular media updates. Last time, Arum was one of the main culprits of “media negotiation,” and regularly disparaged Mayweather’s camp during the process, and later with the last-ditch third-party mediation.

Skepticism aside, I believe both parties have come to grips that no other opponent is acceptable besides each other. Between them, Pacquiao and Mayweather have eliminated the other top welterweights (Mosley, Clottey, Cotto) between them, and proved that they are far more talented than anyone else in the division. Now is the time to see who the best fighter in the world is.

While it’s still early, expect this one to end up in Las Vegas with a 50-50 purse split, and Mayweather getting the Olympic style testing, but with some provision that stops it at least 10-14 days before the fight.

At press time, the fight is targeted for November.

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