By Rick Reeno
Sebastián Contursi, the manager for WBA "regular' junior welterweight champion Marcos Maidana (31-3, 28KOs), explained the reasons behind his boxer's recent decision to continue his career at 147-pounds.
Maidana has agreed to fight undefeated prospect Keith Thurman (17-0, 16KOs) on July 21 at the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. Maidana-Thurman will be the HBO televised co-feature to Adrien Broner's defense of the WBO super featherweight title against Vicente Escobedo.
In his welterweight debut, back in February against Devon Alexander, Maidana looked very sluggish and he was dominated over the ten round distance.
After the loss to Alexander, Maidana announced that he would return to 140-pounds. But, making 140 was starting to become a real struggle.
"After making the 140-pounds weight [limit] during his entire career, it was becoming an issue for Marcos to keep making it - even before the Alexander fight. That's why we decided to take that bout versus Devon," Contursi told BoxingScene.com.
"After that, we had confirmed that trying to go back to 140-pounds would probably be a risk to his health as Marcos would probably arrive on fight night in a very weak condition."
Even with the weight issues Contursi tried to secure a major fight for Maidana at 140, but the opportunities were dwindling down. Maidana is heading back to 147 and wants to prove that his February loss was simply a bad night at the office. Thurman, young and untested, could be a very dangerous proposition.
"Marcos was willing to make the effort [to make 140] but ultimately that proved meaningless at this time as no real options arose. Maidana wanted to face Amir Khan or Danny Garcia but they decided to fight each other instead, while Lamont Peterson is suspended," Contursi said.
"The only other possibility was to make the long awaited rematch against Erik Morales but Morales turned it down once again. Meanwhile, the welterweight division is fully loaded so we have set that division as the new goal."
"We are coming back from a negative experience but Marcos wants to prove that [loss to Alexander] was only a bad night for him."