Boxing Has a Poet Laureate and His Name is Paulie Malignaggi

Boxing Poet Laureate – Paulie Malignaggi, a former world champion in two weight classes, had a rough go of it in his last fight on American soil. Danny Garcia worked him over pretty good before stopping him in the ninth frame. Off that fight, retirement seemed the proper course of action but the Brooklyn-born Malignaggi, who spent the early part of his boyhood in Sicily, troops on. Tomorrow night the 35-year-old campaigner opposes fellow Brooklynite Gabriel Bracero at the Barclays Center on the undercard of the show that features undefeated featherweights Leo Santa Cruz and Carl Frampton in the main event. His bout will air on Showtime Extreme.

Why keep fighting and risk permanent damage? It’s a question that’s been asked of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of professional boxers. But perhaps no one has answered it as eloquently as Malignaggi. His open letter to the boxing community, in which he explains his need to keep on fighting, reads like a fine piece of poetry. Here it is.

Dear Boxing,

I don’t need the money

I don’t need the fame

But I still need to fight

Even my friends think I’m a little crazy

And maybe I am

Hey, I’d have never been a champ if I weren’t

I know fighters don’t age gracefully

I know fighters get hurt

But I also know in my heart I got to fight

Why? I’ll tell you


Not the normal kind, though

More like a bad girlfriend

She’s broken my heart

She’ll do it again

And I keep coming back for more

I love her despite her treacheries

My mind knows better

My heart doesn’t

And it was my heart that got me here in the first place

You see, boxing loved me when no one else would

I was a kid from Sicily

A high school dropout

Boxing gave me things I couldn’t imagine

Boxing let me dream

And that’s what I want

That’s what I’m fighting for

That chance to dream again

(Yours truly, Paulie)

Boxing Poet Laureate


-StormCentre :

Love you Paulie. Your analysis is top stuff. The officiating when in against Lovemore Ndou wasn't; but hey, that's the game. Love how your wear your heart on your sleeve and are accessible. And, love your stance on PEDs. Boxing; everything should be alright so long as you keep fighting guys like Bracero and stay away from the juicers. There's nothing wrong with staying in the game and competing at what level suits you. As almost every active BJJ, Judo, and Karate practitioner does exactly this; yet if you do it in boxing it seems to draw a bad light.
Storm. :) :) :)

-brownsugar :

Everybody needs to fight, feels good to fight every once in a while....there's something very cleansing about it..... its part of human nature Good luck on your upcoming bout... go out strong.

-KO Digest :

You see, boxing loved me when no one else would *
This, right here. I hear that Paulie...

-Radam G :

Paulie, the pug, to Paulie, the Poet Laureate. Way to go, Paulie! I feel your rhythm. Holla!

-oubobcat :

Paulie has no gimme fight against Bracero. I expect we see a solid close scrap with Paulie prevailing on a controversial split decision.

-dino da vinci :

Not enough good things can happen for this kid. Love the guy.

-Kid Blast :

Paulie has the beat