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Paulie Malignaggi Ready: I Expect To Fight Ricky Hatton!

By Keith Idec

Other than Kell Brook, there probably wasn’t another fighter in boxing happier than Paulie Malignaggi when Ricky Hatton announced he’ll return to the ring Nov. 24 in his native Manchester, England.

Malignaggi must concentrate on his Oct. 20 title defense against Pablo Cesar Cano, but the WBA welterweight champion cannot hide his interest in squaring off against Hatton again. The immensely popular British boxer stopped Malignaggi (31-4, 27 KOs) in the 11th round of their scheduled 12-round, 140-pound fight in November 2008.

Malignaggi maintains, however, that his ill-fated partnership with trainer James “Buddy” McGirt was a factor in a fight Malignaggi clearly was losing when referee Kenny Bayless stopped it at MGM Grand.

“I’m pretty sure I’ll get him; I’ll put it that way,” Malignaggi, 31, said to BoxingScene.com. “I really would be surprised if he came back and didn’t fight me. I think after I beat Cano I’ll worry more about it, but … I expect to fight him.”

The 33-year-old Hatton hasn’t announced his next opponent, but a fight against Malignaggi in 2013 would be an attractive fight for Golden Boy Promotions to stage at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, Malignaggi’s home borough.

Hatton (45-2, 32 KOs) will compete at welterweight during his comeback, a weight class above where he retired following a devastating second-round knockout loss to Manny Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KOs) in May 2009 in Las Vegas. He won the WBA championship Malignaggi owns by barely beating Luis Collazo by unanimous decision six years ago in Boston.

Malignaggi, a former IBF junior welterweight champion, will meet Mexico’s Cano (25-1-1, 19 KOs) at Barclays Center as part of a Showtime Championship Boxing quadruple header in 4½ weeks. The Cano clash will mark Malignaggi’s first defense of the WBA 147-pound crown he won from Vyacheslav Senchenko (32-1, 21 KOs), whom Malignaggi stopped in the ninth round April 29 in Donetsk, Ukraine, Senchenko’s hometown.

Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Belowthe belt on 09-19-2012

Punchless Paula is a great opponent for the bloated round hatton as she cannot punch hard enough to hurt the old 33 year old with the glass jaw hatton. make the fight as hatton can win a belt in england.

Comment by pugile#1 on 09-18-2012

Paulie has earned a rematch with Hatton he is a two time champ. Who has withstood the test of time and fought a whose who of the top fighters at 140 and now 147. i for one would love to…

Comment by [email protected] on 09-18-2012

By the way, Dulorme will be the WBA mandatory soon. It will be great for him if Hatton beats Paulie. Cuz Hattons styles is perfect for Dulorme plus he is a huge name, pending Dulorme beats his biggest test in…

Comment by [email protected] on 09-18-2012

[QUOTE=285Kid;12526885]What if Cano hits a home run?[/QUOTE] Paulie have one of the best chins in all of boxing and Canelo dont hit hard enough.!

Comment by 285Kid on 09-18-2012

What if Cano hits a home run?

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