After 12 exciting and bruising rounds, Marcos "El Chino" Maidana (35-3, 31 KOs) defeated the previously undefeated Adrien "The Problem" Broner (27-1, 22 KOs) to take his WBA Welterweight belt in a hellacious fight on Saturday in San Antonio, Texas.
Knocked down in the second and the eighth rounds, Broner hung in there but threw too few punches, landing even fewer than the 30 year-old Argentine, who Showtime analysts characterized as somewhat of a "test" for the young, cocky Broner. Trainer Robert Garcia prepared his fighter to win, and win he did in strong fashion.
Judges at ringside scored the fight:117-110, 116-109 and 115-100.
From the opening bell, Maidana let his fists fly, effectively landing his left hook, which Broner seemed not to recognize, said welterweight Pauli Malignaggi who worked the fight along with Al Bernstein at ringside, because he cosmetized it as if it were his jab that he used early and often.
Pauli, who lost a split decision against Adrien Broner in June 2013 said:
"Maidana's awkward ways are working in his favor. Broner is getting hit with shots from different angles. Shots that he would not normally get hit with."
After the second knockdown, Broner held Maidana's arms down in a clinch that ended with a deliberate head butt from Maidana, who was clearly frustrated that he could not try and end Broner's evening in the eighth. .A point deduction was taken which negated the point gained by Maidana.
Adrien Broner was hustled out of the ring after the scores were announced by his handlers, choosing not to speak to Showtime in the immediate aftermath.
He did meet with the network later in his dressing room. There was speculation that Broner was hurt badly, possibly suffering a broken jaw but that did not appear to be true.
"I'm not here to make any excuses," Broner said. "We're not going to sit in sorrow. We're still going to live tomorrow like we won the fight. I'm still going to party and have fun. My first afterparty is going to be on Tuesday in Cincinnati. We gonna have fun."
For his part, Maidana ran out of gas but not until much later in the fight than most observers thought considering he threw close to 1,000 punches (964) landing a bit less than 30%, according to Showtime stats. Broner landed a larger percentage of his 400 punches but not until late in the fight did he come close to rocking Marcos Maidana.
He got hurt at the end of the 11th round and admitted so in his post-fight comments to media.
"I was hurt in the 11th round. He is a great champion, and I was hurt."
Speculation began almost immediately after the decision was announced that after his first defense attempt at 147 lbs., Broner might not stay there. Both fighters said they'd like a rematch, but in boxing, as in other pro sports, it's about the money. It will be up the promoters to determine, as if we didn't know that.