By Chris Robinson
On August 27th, interim WBA junior welterweight champion Marcos Maidana will find himself in a do or die fight against Gilroy, California’s Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero inside of the HP Pavilion in San Jose. It is the exact kind of fight that boxing thrives on as we will find out whether the pressure and power of Maidana will be enough to upend Guerrero, who has shown himself to be an efficient and polished boxer-puncher over the years.
Maidana had spent his recent training camps out in Las Vegas but felt that a change was in order for the Guerrero fight. For this contest he has been putting in work on the island of Puerto Rico as he trains in San Juan near the Barrio Obrero area.
Speaking from camp, the 27-year old Maidana insists that being on the island has had a calming effect on him.
“I feel great. I really enjoy this kind of atmosphere out here in Puerto Rico since we have the beautiful ocean, the beach and especially a hot temperature. We came from a terrible cold weather in Argentina so here is paradise. I keep my usual team with me and we are having a good camp, training hard for another yet tough fight,” Maidana told me through his advisor Sebastian Contursi recently.
It’s important for Maidana to leave a message against Guerrero, as his most recent performance this past April saw him struggle towards a majority decision over come backing Erik Morales inside of the MGM Grand. On that same card, Guerrero would put forth one of his most complete performances as a professional when he carved up former title challenge Michael Katsidis to collect the interim WBA and WBO lightweight belts.
Maidana knows what he is going up against with Guerrero but don’t expect him to change up his aggressive style.
“He is a very skillful fighter,” Maidana said with respect. “Knows how to walk the ring, boxes very well and is a very smart counterpuncher. I’ll put pressure on him as I usually do and let’s see what new things my trainer Rudy Perez has in store for me.”
I was also sure to ask Maidana about his countryman Lucas Matthysse, who was seen this past June 25th dropping a controversial split-decision to former champion Devon Alexander in St. Louis despite scoring a third round knockdown and often pressing the action. I asked Marcos if he caught the fight and what he thought of everything.
“I did,” Maidana confirmed. “I think Lucas deserved to win by a narrow margin. In the end, it happened what everyone thought it was gonna happen if the fight went the distance.”
Maidana and Matthysse have seen their names intertwined because of their history in Argentina as well as several people pondering a fight between them as professionals down the road. While insisting that Guerrero is the only fighter on his mind at the moment, Maidana was gracious enough to elaborate on his previous amateur duels against Matthyse.
“When I first went to Buenos Aires from my province Santa Fe, Lucas was already on the Argentinean national team. But I beat him in a national championship and therefore I earned my spot at the national team myself. During almost two years Lucas and I competed to represent our country as we were in the same weight class. We fought four times and I beat him three times while the other was a draw. They were all good competitive fights and he even knocked me down once. But in the end I used to win based on my physical pressure I guess.”