Anthony Catanzaro (left) is the longstanding manager of Paulie Malignaggi.
Written by John Archibald, Resolution Sports
This past Saturday night, a rambunctious crowd at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn had its full support and enthusiasm around hometown favorite Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi (32-5, 7 KOs) as the two-division world champion put his WBA Welterweight Title against the unbeaten Adrien “The Problem” Broner (27-0, 22 KOs) of Cincinnati.
The duo put on a show for 12 rounds in this championship bout, with Malignaggi dealing heavy volume on his punches while Broner worked mostly behind his counter right hand. Final ringside statistics reflected the type of numbers that would come from those contradicting styles, with Malignaggi throwing 319 more punches than his counterpart. By the end of the fight, the Brooklyn native landed 214 of the 843 shots he attempted compared to Broner connecting on 246 of the 524 punches he threw.
Each round appeared to be a very tough one to judge, and two of the three final scorecards reflected that. The first two cards were both 115-113 counts, with each competitor taking one of those tallies. The last card was a mind boggling 117-111 score in favor of Broner, who would win his third world title via split decision.
"He worked for about 30 seconds every round," Malignaggi said after the bout. "This was a close fight. I don't mind if you had him winning close or me winning close, it was that kind of a fight."
One man who has long been standing beside Malignaggi and watched him achieve the extremely difficult boxing feat of winning a world championship in two separate weight classes is manager Anthony Catanzaro. Following the fight, Catanzaro confirmed that he was very pleased with the performance of his fighter, who proved he is still on a world class level at the age of 32-years-old.
“Paulie was very successful controlling distance and working the body,” Catanzaro remarked. “He was never hurt during the fight and said Broner is NOT a puncher.”
Despite what anyone says about Malignaggi, one thing that no one can deny is the toughness and grit of the gutsy New Yorker. The only two times that Malignaggi has ever been stopped in his career were both on his feet, and he is a fighter who has overcome various injuries and fractures throughout the course of a bout and still finished to the final bell.
“As far as his toughness is concerned, it comes from his experiences,” Catanzaro commented on the topic. “A lot of fighters go through grueling fights, but the real question is are you willing to go back to that place again once you know what it takes?”
With this highly anticipated bout with Broner now in the books, Catanzaro answered quite simply on what was next for Malignaggi, who also serves as a lead commentator for Showtime Boxing.
“What’s next is a well-deserved vacation,” Catanzaro confirmed.