By Chris Robinson
Later tonight, inside of the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York in Showtime-televised attraction, WBA welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi (32-4, 7 KO’s) will look to defend his crown against one of the flashiest and brashest faces in the sport when he tangles with Adrien Broner (26-0, 22 KO’s).
Despite moving up two weight classes for the fight, Broner, a former champion at 130 and 135 pounds, is an overwhelming favorite heading into the match due to various factors.
Asked for his assessment of the contest, renowned trainer Floyd Mayweather Sr. seemed to agree with the odds.
“I can’t see Paulie Malignaggi doing too much of anything,” Mayweather told me recently. “He’s going to go in there [and] the only thing I could see him doing, I could see him running. I could see him running for a while, and that’s about it.”
However, Mayweather wasn’t exactly in the mood to praise Broner, pointing towards the Cincinnati native’s fifth round stoppage of British hopeful Gavin Rees this past February.
“Well, I’m going to take that back,” Mayweather said. “That other white guy (Gavin Rees), I don’t know where he was from, that dude was hitting Broner man. I don’t understand it. This is a tough game, man, and I just [feel] personally, myself, that he shouldn’t be getting hit with none of them punches at all.
“I just don’t think Malignaggi is going to get away with it,” Mayweather would add, further clarifying his prediction despite some concerns over Broner’s last outing.
Due to his flamboyant nature and undeniable talent, Broner is often compared to boxing’s premier talent and Mayweather’s son Floyd.
While there may be a few parallels between the two men, Mayweather doesn’t see Broner as the second coming.
“Broner, he’s not going to be another Floyd,” said Mayweather. “But, he can grow into be something good though.
“You know, this is a thinking man’s game,” Mayweather added. “This is not just going in there and fighting with strength, power. You’ve got to use your brain."