by David P. Greisman
A win over Shawn Porter on Saturday night on Showtime would not only give Paulie Malignaggi a welterweight title belt — Malignaggi’s adviser also believes that such a victory would put Malignaggi into contention for a fight with Floyd Mayweather.
“We are not looking past Porter tomorrow night. We know we have our hands full, but we know Paulie can deal with him cerebrally, stylistically and physically,” Anthony Catanzaro told BoxingScene.com on Friday in Washington, D.C. “But I feel looking at the landscape of the welterweight division, a win against Shawn Porter for Paulie’s third world title and second in the welterweight weight class, we have to be mentioned as far as the Mayweather sweepstakes are concerned.
“Paulie’s still one of the biggest names out there. He brings a lot more to the table than the average fighter, commercially. We sell tickets. He makes for good TV. He’s still a world-class fighter after all these years, and that’s a testament to his boxing skills, boxing IQ and internal fortitude and character,” Catanzaro said.
The next question turned to the marketability of such a bout, given that Mayweather’s opponents need to be sold as posing a threat to the undefeated champion.
“Floyd hasn’t been in the ring in a while with a guy who can pose tactical problems for him in the ring,” Catanzaro responded. “With all due respect to the guys he’s fighting, guys want to bum rush and maul him. And if you don’t have the foot speed, which we saw in the Canelo [Alvarez] fight, you’re basically tailor-made for him and will get picked apart. I do feel [Marcos] Maidana deserves the Mayweather fight, but I also feel that stylistically he falls right into the Mayweather game plan.”
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