WBC welterweight, jr. middle belts at stake in Mayweather-Maidana II
Floyd Maywather Jr. will be risking both his WBC welterweight and junior middleweight belts against Marcos Maidana in their rematch on Sept. 13 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman announced on Wednesday.
“As long as both fighters make the 147-pound limit, both titles will be at stake,” said Sulaiman, referring to the return bout of Mayweather’s majority decision over Maidana in May.
“If both fighters make the welterweight limit, then it is only obvious that they are not fighting over the limit for super welterweight. This comes at a time when there is no mandatory contender, so the WBC has accepted to support this double-division championship.”
Mayweather already is THE RING’s champion at 147- and 154-pounds, as well as the beltholder for the WBA in each of those categories.
Mayweather’s fourth-round knockout victory in September 2011 dethroned Victor Ortiz as WBC welterweight belholder. Mayweather captured the WBA’s junior middleweight title with a unanimous decision victory over Miguel Cotto in his next fight in May 2012.
After serving a jail stint in the Clark County Detention Center from June 1-through-Aug. 3 of 2012, Mayweather returned to action for a unanimous decision defense over Robert Guerrero at 147-pounds in May 2013.
Next up was a majority decision over Saul Alvarez last September for the WBC’s 154-pound belt before Mayweather added Maidana’s WBA 147-pound title to the ones he already owned.
“The most important thing here is that Floyd Mayweather defeated Miguel Cotto at super welterweight, and then, he came down and fought Robert Guerrero at welterweight. Then, he moves up and beats Canelo Alvarez at super welterweight,” said Sulaiman.
“After that, he then comes back down and beats Marcos Maidana as a welterweight. He has been fighting for the last four or five years, moving up and down from welterweight to super welterweight. This is very rare, but there is some precedent.”
In attempt to support his argument, Sulaiman raised the notion of Sugar Ray Leonard’s victory over Donny Lalonde in November of 1988, an unprecedented feat that resulted in Leonard’s winning the world titles of two separate weight classes with the same fight.
Leonard got WBC light heavyweight titleholder Donny Lalonde to put his 175-pound belt on the line at a catchweight of 168 pounds, with the WBC’s newly created super middleweight title also up for grabs.
Leonard, who had upset undisputed middleweight champ Marvin Hagler for the WBC’s 160-pound title in his previous fight, was dropped in the fourth round before eventually stopping Lalonde the ninth round, taking both WBC 175-pound and 168-pound belts in the process.
Sulaiman also noted that in 1933, Barney Ross defeated Canzoneri, winning both the light and super lightweight world titles, and that in the late 1930s, Henry Armstrong was simultaneously recognized as the featherweight, lightweight and welterweight champion of the world.
“This is a case where something is being invented,” said Sulaiman. “So if Marcos Maidana beats Floyd, then he will be the champion in both divisions.”