by David P. Greisman
Naazim Richardson, trainer of Bernard Hopkins and Steve Cunningham, spoke with BoxingScene.com on April 18.
BoxingScene.com: How do you see the fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Marcos Maidana going?
Richardson: “Like you’ve seen every other fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Marcos Maidana fought other people. Maidana’s coming to knock your eyebrows off. And Floyd is going to let all that sh*t go past him like Spider-Man. It’s just the way these guys fight. It’s a matter of, ‘Can Floyd make every one of them miss?’ which we’ve seen him do before. Can Maidana make one of them land and buckle you, which we’ve seen him do before. It makes for a marketable fight.
“You can erase some of the stuff about Maidana and Broner. This ain’t Broner. I keep telling y’all, people don’t understand. Broner is an offensive fighter who has an OK defense. Mayweather is a defensive fighter who has an exceptional offense. That’s the difference. A guy who’s looking to kill you all the time is bound to run into something. That just happens. Everybody who’s done it, it’s happened, Tyson on down. Looking to seek and destroy usually runs you into something, because you run in the house too deep, you can’t turn around and go out the door now.
“But guys who take those cautionary steps like Bernard and pick their times to be exposed, that’s the difference between Mayweather and Broner. They’re two different fighters. They got similarities. Every boxer who puts on a left and a right glove has a similarity.”
BoxingScene.com: So let’s get to the questions you asked: Can Mayweather make Maidana miss almost every time?
Richardson: “So far we’ve seen him make everybody else miss. Why should we think he can’t make this dude? I’m not a run into the wall dude. There are certain fighters, like I said, you have to give them their props. For some reason, the public don’t like to do that. We can watch a guy knock out 31 dudes, and then he knocks another dude out and they say, ‘That guy took a dive.’ We’ve seen you knock out 31 dudes. [This is in reference to Deontay Wilder vs. Malik Scott] Why would Malik Scott take a dive? How many of them other 31 dudes took a dive?”
BoxingScene.com: So then the other side is can you see Maidana catch and hurt Mayweather?
Richardson: “Can he catch him? Can he hurt him? He can hurt him if he can catch him. Now, ‘Can he catch him?’ is the question. It ain’t a question whether or not he can hurt you. He can hurt anybody he catch. But the question is ‘Can he catch him?’ and that’s what we’ll have to see, because we’re looking at one of the best dodgers in this particular time in the sport.”
BoxingScene.com: So do you think Mayweather by decision, or that he stops Maidana?
Richardson: “I see Floyd winning by decision.”
Pick up a copy of David’s new book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsamazon or internationally at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsworldwide . Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]