Malignaggi and Alexander Would Both Like Crack At Mayweather

BY Michael Woods ON December 06, 2013
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Paul Malignaggi Devon Alexander Paul Malignaggi is smart. Not smart for a boxer, to use a patronizing term, but smart, period. I told him so a couple days ago, as we chatted about his Saturday scrap against Zab Judah at Barclays Center.

"You like to think a few steps ahead, and you got some Machiavelli in you," I told him, as he offered a Cheshire grin in return, and didn't even bother to half-refute my assertions. "Thanks," he said.

"So, I have to think you'd really like to get a fight with Floyd Mayweather. Beat Zab, and then Floyd, is that the plan?"

"If I said I never thought about that, I'd be lying," the 33-year-old former Bensonhurst resident, who was living in LA but is now moving back to NY, told me. "I have given myself a kind of 'road to Mayweather,' if that was to happen. I need to win this fight, I want the winner of the Dec. 14 Broner-Maidana fight, win that fight and then I can be legitimately talking about a Floyd Mayweather fight. Coming off a win over Zab Judah, it's a nice win, but people wouldn't want to see me and Floyd Mayweather. Win this one and the winner of Broner-Maidana, that would give me the momentum to really push for a promotion with Floyd Mayweather."

The boxer nodded when I stated that he is "unofficially-officially" signed on with mega-advisor Al Haymon, who does the same for Floyd Mayweather and most of the top talent which fights under the Golden Boy promotional umbrella. Folks like to joke that God and Al Haymon are 1-2 (or is it 2-1?) when it comes to being thanked after big bouts.

Malignaggi didn't disagree when I noted that could allegiance, which shocked many folks when word of it dribbled out in October, could make the push to craft a Mayweather-Malignaggi promotion a reality more viable than if he was still outside the Haymon sphere.

The competition to get a dance with "Money" is of course intense, as a Mayweather date means a career best payday for most all the contenders. Devon Alexander, who fights on the Saturday Brooklyn card, holds the IBF welter crown. His trainer-manager, Kevin Cunningham, told me he's love his kid to get that opportunity, but he didn't seem all that hopeful that the dream could reach reality. "I don't think Floyd will pick an athletic, black boxer (for his next fight)," the St. Louis based tutor, an ex cop, told me. "He doesn't want to fight a guy with quick hands, quick feet." The three previous Floyd foes share some characteristics, Cunningham noted. None are African-American, but beyond that egregiously simplistic difference, Canelo Alvarez, Robert Guerrero and Miguel Cotto don't possess speed and hand and foot to give Mayweather problems. Let me be clear when I say that Cunningham didn't imply, and I sure as hell don't wish to even hint that I believe that athletes, or boxers, or people, can be lumped into categories by race, and that all black fighters possess certain characteristics that fighters of other races or ethnicities do not. Only a buffoon believes that...

In addition, there exists market research that shows that Hispanic fans are a strong marketing base for promoters when they're trying to sell product, and show their loyalty with their willingness, many times, to pay handsomely for the privilege of seeing their favorite pugilist at work.

Readers, you know me. I like, oftentimes, to report, and let you decide. Have at it in our Forum!

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Comment on this article

brownsugar says:

OK....as long as its not PPV.

Radam G says:

Ex ¢op Kevin Conninghumbug is ethnocentric and a bit clownish racist to all none Anglos. Money May is going to dance with a none-black dude, who's faster than Money May is -- hand and feet. And that dude is Amir Khan. And it is all for da moolah -- prizefighting BIG, not pride fighting ¢mall. Even Sugar Ray Robinson wouldn't give the "Black Murder Row" a call.

The ex ¢op is a dirty-minded trainer, who would call Jesus Christ a ______ ______ ______ and a false prophet who didn't have any "African American" disciples and Doesn't Bless quick-handed-and-quick-footed blacks.

As the ex ¢op did Da Manny, now he is accusing Money May of being scare to dance with "inner-city blacks."

Devon Alexander has also been exposed. And has been given a couple of hometown-gift decisions. I wouldn't be surprised if Devon loses on Saturday -- USA time. Holla!

The Shadow says:

RG, Cunningham is slandering s*it talker. That's what he does because Devon is a humble, boring, bland, lame dude with no swag.

Devon Alexander is all bark. Literally. Listen when he punches. He and Broner sound like freakin' Monica Seles.

And Editor Mike, of course there are styles that are shaped by one's culture, let's not be silly. Just like there's a way of playing soccer, based on where you're from. Or basketball.

There's a reason European clubs set up training facilities in certain African countries where they have greater explosiveness, coordination and technique.

Brazilian have a certain style they're thought. Nothing wrong with that, it's not necessarily ethnic, it's just the doctrines of the culture. (I have a black uncle raised in the Danish amateur system and he is CERTAINLY not a slick fighter. But he's not a turtle-guard robot either like those silly Danish fighters.)

There's a reason you get long-distance runners from East Africa. Let's not kid ourselves. Nothing buffoonerish about that except pretending it's not real.

That said, Cunningham is a cunning man. Cunninghumbug, CONningham, all apply. He's just talking sh*t to hopefully create a new narrative that Floyd is ducking da brothas to hopefully force him into a fight with Deven Seles, er, Alexander.

And like you said, RG, I wouldn't be surprised if Porter tap dances all over Alexander The Not-So-Great.

Radam G says:

Optical illusions at the highest level and pulling that trap-door lever. That is how they roll in the bucks by being tricky-d¡¢k clever. As a cop, KC's first lesson was the art of fibbing, jiving and conniving. Holla!

brownsugar says:

Cunningham's rants are standard for the business. Everybody wants a crack Big Money May and will say anything to get one...including using sensitive non-politically-correct stereotypes to agitate their way into the fight. Not every black fighter is going to be a Pernell Whitaker or Sugar Ray Leonard....we have our James Kirkland's, Lacy's, and Reids too.

Besides if Mayweather could fight Alexander for MEGA bucks ........he would...... "easy work".
But how can the fighter, who got a gift against Kotelnik, barely survived Mattysse, and quit against Bradley be considered a worthy PPV challenger?

Alexander has to distinguish himself among the current group of welterweights by beating someone like Keith Thurman or even beating a noteworthy junior middleweight to generate demand. Alexander is a good fighter but not a compelling challenger.

Malignacci is even less of a challenge..he got beat by Hatton, Khan, Cotto and Broner.

amayseng says:

If Cunningham's fighter was actually good he may have a case, instead Devon received a few gift decisions,

quit against Bradley, and has little intrigue, he is all arms with his shots and is limited power wise..

and my God, why is he grunted throwing those arm shots? have some dignity Alexander and shut down

the grunts and holding.......Accept the fact you are boring and wont sell a Floyd fight.

Thurman may make a good floyd opponent only as the non hardcore fans will see his firepower and think

Floyd will be vulnerable when Floyd will actually box his ears off.

leon30001 says:

Writer is obsessed with race. Pretty sad. NO-ONE CARES! Jesus...it's so boring.

jzzy says:

Who doesn't want a crack at Mayweather ?? It's like hitting the lotto, but the real question is
who deserves the shot. Neither of these dudes has done anything to stir up the fight fans. They
present no credible threat to Mayweather and have no PPV appeal. If Maidana can hunt down
and beat up Broner, maybe Floyd will give him a shot because of his Latin fan base.

Radam G says:

Ditto, jzzy! You got jiggy with it.

It is all about the money that will bring you the honey.

@leon30thou and one, the author doesn't gives a rat's @$$ about race. He's simply reporting, not instigating. Holla!

The Shadow says:

Who doesn't want a crack at Mayweather ?? It's like hitting the lotto, but the real question is
who deserves the shot. Neither of these dudes has done anything to stir up the fight fans. They
present no credible threat to Mayweather and have no PPV appeal. If Maidana can hunt down
and beat up Broner, maybe Floyd will give him a shot because of his Latin fan base.


Jzzy, the Argentine fan base isn't worth much (yet). The lucrative Latinos -- Mexicans and Ricans -- don't really support those guys.

It's kinda like the Cuban segment. I think they're building it, though. A nice KAYO over Broner -- which likely won't happen -- will definitely build some buzz around him.

Some of the best audiences are Mexicans, Filipinos, Boricuas, and the urban (black) market, when they elect to buy. The urban market swings the pendulum like a mofo. But it's like that throughout the economy.

As I put in different post, they are trying to build new markets and moving away from ethnicities. Orlando Cruz was a nice lotto ticket but he couldn't cut the mustard.

With their buying power, that would've been a DOPE market for TR to tap into.

And I think they're going to stop selling Floyd fights as competitive matchups. That ship has sailed, no one will believe it until some KO artist-boogeyman comes through, which could be Maidana.

Until, they just have to try to sell excitement. Which Khan brings every time.

Devon Seles certainly doesn't. He would just bitch out just like he did vs. Bradley. Do y'all remember how he screamed out after a Bradley butt as if he just had a huge orgasm? Perhaps he's part of the Cruz crew, hehehe.

If he fights Mayweather, he will just scream for help or try to tell his cop trainer to arrest Mayweather for assault. He bores me.

I think the September opponent could be interesting, though. We already have a few hints who it could be through the grapevine.

The Shadow says:

Cunningham's rants are standard for the business. Everybody wants a crack Big Money May and will say anything to get one...including using sensitive non-politically-correct stereotypes to agitate their way into the fight. Not every black fighter is going to be a Pernell Whitaker or Sugar Ray Leonard....we have our James Kirkland's, Jeff Lacy's, and Reids too.

Besides if Mayweather could fight Alexander for MEGA bucks ........he would...... "easy work".
But how can the fighter, who got a gift against Kotelnik, barely survived Mattysse, and quit against Bradley be considered a worthy PPV challenger?

Alexander has to distinguish himself among the current group of welterweights by beating someone like Keith Thurman or even beating a noteworthy junior middleweight to generate demand. Alexander is a good fighter but not a compelling challenger.

Malignacci is even less of a challenge..he got beat by Hatton, Khan, Cotto and Broner.


I like that, Suge. Go beat Keith Thurman and maybe he can graduate to Ortiz. Or get a [URL="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/03/justin-biebers-swagger-coach_n_992024.html">swag coach like Justin Bieber has.

Perhaps then he can get a little personality. Lord knows no one wants to listen to some krazy kop on the take.

Since he likes to slander people, I'll just throw this out there: I wouldn't be shocked to see CONningham on Dateline NBC with Chris Hansen.

brownsugar says:

I like that, Suge. Go beat Keith Thurman and maybe he can graduate to Ortiz. Or get a [URL="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/03/justin-biebers-swagger-coach_n_992024.html">swag coach like Justin Bieber has.

Perhaps then he can get a little personality. Lord knows no one wants to listen to some krazy kop on the take.

Since he likes to slander people, I'll just throw this out there: I wouldn't be shocked to see CONningham on Dateline NBC with Chris Hansen.


Shadow I think a lot of questions will be answered when Thurman faces Soto Karass.
Currently nobody at 147 or 154 wants him... If he performs well he'll be even more avoided.

SouthPaul says:

Shadow mentions Ortiz? Did anyone else suspect he was liquored up during that brief segment with Kahn and Brian Kenny? Or was it the broken jaw that had him sounding punchy drunk with a sprinkle and dash of 50 Cent barley opening his mouth type conversation? I like Ortiz, he's been a really exciting fighter to watch, but I wouldn't be surprised if he gets beat in his return bout. Got the taste of Hollywood... That was obvious ....may have done him in.

The Shadow says:

Yeah it's all moot now, though. Alexander is in the back of the line. I don't see where he goes from here. Maybe Judah? Thurman? Pederson [sic; not really]? He's already been fed the ones that fit him stylistically.

Oh! He may get Kell Brook.

As for Ortiz, he's like a loose cannon. You never know what you get with him. But I sense he's dedicated.

And like it or not, he's in the running to fight Floyd. He has to rack up some wins, of course, but that's the path he's going down.

Guerrero knows, that's why he wants to get a crack at the vicious one.

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