Eager to add 12 pounds to get to 147, WBC lightweight champion “The Problem” Adrien Broner is determined to fight WBA welterweight titleholder Paulie Malignaggi on June 22 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
“People want to see us put on a show,” tweeted Broner, 23, who is often compared to “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather due to dominating roughly 300 amateur pugilists. “You’re (Malignaggi) my homie, but I got to take that WBA (title) with me and then we can party together.”
Broner (26-0, 22 KOs) most recently exited the squared circle on February 16 with a fifth round TKO triumph over Welshman Gavin Rees in front of a raucous crowd at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.
“The Problem” twice floored Rees (37-2-1, 18 KOs) before trainer Gary Lockett mercifully halted the battering at 2 minutes, 59 seconds into the round.
Comparatively, the 32-year-old Malignaggi, former IBF light welterweight royalty who has won five consecutive bouts at 147 pounds, last vacated the ring with a split decision victory against Mexican Pablo César Cano.
Roger “Pit” Perron is a venerable boxing trainer from Brockton (Mass.) who now works with Mike and Rich Cappiello at their gym, Cappiello Brothers Boxing and Training.
Perron expected Broner to trump Rees and predicts the youngster will continue maturing into one of the sport’s premier scrappers.
“Broner looks like the next great,” said Perron, 76, who worked with International Boxing Hall of Famer Marvelous Marvin Hagler (62-3-2, 52 KOs) at the Petronelli Brothers Gym. “He looks like he’ll become the next superstar as today’s big guns begin fading away.”
Despite getting his face broken by Miguel Cotto in June 2006, Malignaggi, somehow managed to go the distance against the Puerto Rican icon.
Hence, the Brooklynite, who last lost to Amir Khan by an 11th-round knockout in May 2010, is undoubtedly a legitimate badass brimming with testicular fortitude.
Nevertheless, regardless of any size advantage favoring “The Magic Man,” Broner, a cocky and flamboyant wunderkind who is ranked as the number one lightweight in the world by BoxRec and the sixth preeminent pound-for-pound fighter by The Ring, would overwhelm Malignaggi.