Lem’s latest: Berto recovery update; Malignaggi mulls Senchenko
Former IBF and WBC welterweight beltholder Andre Berto already was set to forego surgery in favor of rehabilitation as a result of having suffered a ruptured left biceps during training on Monday, but his rate of recovery has been re-characterized as “speedy.”
Berto’s injury forced the cancellation of a rematch with Victor Ortiz that was scheduled for Feb. 11, but his trainer, Tony Morgan, informed RingTV.com that the fighter has received more favorable news than before after having seen a Los Angeles-based doctor.
“The rehab doctor was so impressed with how much Berto was willing to work, that the doctor believes that it’s going to be a very speedy recovery,” said Morgan.
“The doctor wouldn’t give him an exact time frame of how long, but he doesn’t think that it’s going to be very long at all. Andre says that he’s going to push himself, because he wants to get right back into it.”
Morgan said that the injury occurred after Berto “heard a pop” while throwing a punch in sparring against Tureano Johnson on Monday.
The first bout with Ortiz (29-3-2, 22 knockouts), last April, featured two knockdowns by each fighter before Berto lost his WBC belt by a unanimous decision.
Ortiz was subsequently dethroned following a fourth-round knockout loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in September, the same month that Berto (28-1, 22 KOs) rebounded by beating IBF welterweight titleholder Jan Zaveck by fifth-round knockout.
Berto gave up the IBF belt to face Ortiz in a non-title fight.
VYACHESLAV SENCHENKO-PAULIE MALIGNAGGI FIGHT IN FLUX?
Union Boxing, the European promoter of Ukrainian WBA welterweight beltholder Vyacheslav Senchenko, won last month’s purse bid for the right to host Senchenko’s defense against former IBF junior welterweight titleholder Paulie Malignaggi.
With the winning purse bid of $1,000,100 as first reported by Jake Donovan of BoxingScene.com, Union Boxing wants to play host to an April bout in Donbass Arena in Donetsk, Ukraine, where Senchenko (32-0, 21 KOs) scored his last victory by sixth-roudn knockout over Marco Antonio Avendano in August.
Nicknamed “The Magic Man,” Malignaggi (30-4, 6 KOs) refuses to be classified as a “journeyman” fighter, having more or less given his career a second life by rising into the welterweight ranks.
Malignaggi has resumed his winning ways as a 147-pounder, where his slick boxing skills and energy level are bolstered by the fact that he no longer has to “suck so much weight.”
If a lucrative bout with Senchenko or someone else can’t be made, Malignaggi cited several outside investments among the reasons he won’t stick around and be an “opponent” in the sport.
“I want to know ASAP, because I want to know whether to prepare for Senchenko or to prepare for something else or to not prepare at all,” said Malignaggi, who has invested in two New York-based restaurants.
“But I don’t have to fight for money. It’s nice to fight period. But I don’t have to go into situations that I’m not comfortable with, because I’ve got money and money makes money.”
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Malignaggi has signed with Golden Boy Promotions, under whom he has won three consecutive welterweight bouts since being stopped in the 11th round by Amir Khan during Khan’s American debut at Madison Square Garden in May of last year.
Golden Boy Promotions CEO, Richard Schaefer, said Malignaggi has been given the paper work.
“We have sent Paulie the bout contract,” said Schaefer. “And we are waiting to see what his decision is going to be.”
Malignaggi is coming off a one-sided 10-round unanimous decision victory Orlando Lora on Oct. 1.