By Bill Emes
In the opinion of WBA welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi (32-4, 7KOs), Mexican boxer Pablo Cesar Cano (25-2, 19KOs) did not try to make the weight on Friday - when Cano stepped on the scale and he was over the welterweight limit.
"In my opinion, I think they took a different approach as far as when they handled the time to make the weight. I don't think they really tried to make the weight after they had time to make the weight," Malignaggi said. "I think figured 'let's not weaken ourselves, let's just try to get a win over Malignaggi instead because a win over Malignaggi is still a win over a name and we don't have a win over a name yet. If we try to make the weight we may weaken ourselves.'"
"I think they just chalked up the title fight as a loss, and said 'forget the title fight, we didn't make weight, lets just try to get the win over Malignaggi. Because he was strong, he was a good puncher. I wasn't hit that hard since the Miguel Cotto fight."
Malignaggi won the fight, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, with scores of 118-109, 114-113 and 114-113. Cano made it a very physical fight and even dropped Malignaggi in the eleventh round.
There were many who saw the fight as being close, but Malignaggi was not one of them. Even with the knockdown in round eleven, Malignaggi felt that he was far ahead in the fight.
"I respect Cano, but I didn't think the fight was close," Malignaggi said.
"When I got knocked down, I didn't say 'this fight is close, I can't afford this knockdown.' I said 'man, don't get your ass knocked out, you're comfortably ahead. I can't believe you just got yourself dropped.' I didn't think the fight was in jeopardy at all."