by David P. Greisman
BoxingScene.com caught up briefly with Kevin Cunningham, trainer to former 140-pound titleholder Devon Alexander. Cunningham talked about the possibility of Alexander’s next fight, his debut at welterweight, being against Paulie Malignaggi, and also about why the move to the 147-pound division is the right one.
BoxingScene.com: What’s the latest?
Cunningham: “I don’t have anything definite to talk about. For the most part, there’s a lot of rumors and innuendos and buzz about Devon and fighting Paulie. As of this point, I haven’t heard anything from [Golden Boy Promotions CEO] Richard Schaefer yet. It’s pretty much just a bunch of conversation and rumor going on right now.”
BoxingScene.com: Do you want that fight for Devon?
Cunningham: “Definitely. I think it’s a good first fight at welterweight for Devon. I think Paulie, he’s experienced, he’s shown that he’s still a slick boxer in there. He knows his way around the ring, and he’s been in with some of the top guys. I think it’s a good test for Devon’s first fight at welterweight.”
BoxingScene.com: Do you think Devon’s going to have any trouble adjusting to 147?
Cunningham: “No. I think that’s part of his problem in the last couple of fights, we’re taking off too much, cutting into muscle, to the point where it was just making him weak making 140. He’s been fighting 140 since he was 16. He’s 24 years old now. He’s growing. He’s maturing. His body’s maturing. We can’t keep squeezing him down to make 140 forever.
“You look at Victor Ortiz, all these guys were in the 2004 Olympic trials. Victor Ortiz, when he was in the 2004 Olympic trials, he was fighting 132. Devon was 141. Amir Khan was 130-something in the Olympics. [Ortiz has recently moved to welterweight, while Khan is talking about doing so soon] The kid can’t fight at 140 forever.”
David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter at twitter.com/fightingwords2 or on Facebook at facebook.com/fightingwordsboxing, or send questions and comments to [email protected]