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Malignaggi eyes Hatton, Chaves

Fighters Network


WBA welterweight titleholder Paulie Malignaggi has been mandated to face the organization’s hard-hitting, interim beltholder, Diego Chaves, of Argentina by Jan. 27, according to Malignaggi’s attorney, Steve Bash.

Malignaggi (32-4, 7 knockouts) is coming off a Showtime-televised split-decision victory over Mexico City’s Pablo Cesar Cano at Barclays Center in his native Brooklyn, on Oct. 20.

Malignaggi won the belt with April’s ninth-round stoppage of previously unbeaten Ukrainian Vyacheslav Senchenko, which represented Malignaggi’s fifth straight victory as a welterweight during a run that has included two knockout wins.

The news about Chaves (22-0, 18 KOs) comes in the wake of Malignaggi’s having expressed the desire for a rematch with Ricky Hatton (45-2-2, 32 KOs), to whom he lost by 11th-round knockout in November 2008.

Hatton, 34, will end a 3¾-year retirement on Nov. 24 in a Showtime-televised clash with Senchenko (31-1, 21 KOs), having last been in the ring when he was stopped in the second round by Manny Pacquiao in May of 2009.

“They’ve announced that the guy who has the interim titles is the mandatory, but our reaction is, ‘fine, but let’s see what happens with the Hatton fight,'” said Bash of Malignaggi, who is promoted by Golden Boy.

“We know that there are other fights that could happen depending on what happens in November with Hatton. We’re aware of it, but we’re not even thinking about it until we see how other things play out.”

Malignaggi, 32, has not lost since falling by 11th-round knockout to Amir Khan as a junior welterweight at New York’s Madison Square Garden in May of 2010.

Chaves, 26, is after his sixth straight knockout win, having earned his strap with a second-round stoppage of Ismael El Massoudi and followed that up with last month’s second-round knockout of Jose Miranda.


Malignaggi successful debuted as a Showtime boxing analyst last month in Las Vegas, when Mexican star and WBC junior middleweight titleholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez scored three knockdowns during his fifth round stoppage over Josesito Lopez.

Malignaggi will return to that role over the next two months on Nov. 10, Nov. 24, and, Dec. 1, respectively.

On Nov. 10, WBC junior featherweight beltholder Abner Mares, of Montebello, Calif., and rising WBA bantamweight titleholder Anselmo Moreno, of Panama, will clash in the main event of a Showtime-televised card that will also include a defense by IBF bantamweight titleholder Leo Santa Cruz, of Lincoln Heights, Calif., against Mexico’s Victor Zaleta.

Also scheduled to be a part of the Mares-Moreno event at Staples Center in Los Angeles is a bout between Mexican junior middleweight contender Alfredo Angulo and twice-beaten Raul Casarez, of Edinburg, Texas.

Malignaggi will also be ringside for Hatton-Senchenko in Manchester, England, and also on Dec. 1 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, when WBA “regular” junior middleweight beltholder Austin Trout, of Las Cruces, New Mexico, will make a defense against Puerto Rican three-division title-winner Miguel Cotto in a Showtime-televised fight.

Photo by Alex Trautwig, Getty Images

Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]