Malignaggi and Diaz last squared off on August 22nd (Photo by Will Hart, HBO)
Juan Diaz Refuses a Rematch after Controversial Decision in Houston
Brooklyn, N.Y. (Monday, October 5, 2009) – Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz is refusing Paulie “The Magic Man” Malignaggi a rematch after the Houston fighter took a questionable decision over the Brooklyn native this past August on HBO. Malignaggi, who had won by at least two rounds on virtually every score card that night except the three officials at ringside, has been asking for the rematch on neutral ground since taking on Diaz in his own back yard, but it does not appear that the Mexican fighter is going to give him that shot.
“We tried everything we could to make the rematch,” a discouraged Malignaggi recently stated to BoxingScene.com. “They tried everything in their power not to make it happen. They never wanted the rematch.”
Last week, it appeared that DiBella Entertainment, which represents Malignaggi, and Golden Boy Promotions, which represents Diaz, were close to defining the terms on a December 12th rematch in Chicago. The fight was scheduled to be in a 20-foot ring after the two fought in an 18-foot ring during their first bout, which disadvantaged Malignaggi because he is a more active boxer that likes to slip his jab and stay on the move. Financial terms of the fight were seemingly close as well, with HBO prepared to air the rematch live after the great show in August.
“I assumed when Golden Boy and I reached an agreement that the deal was done, and I think (Golden Boy CEO) Richard Schaefer believed it was going to get done,” Malignaggi promoter Lou DiBella said in a press release. “I know that Golden Boy tried to make this fight with the license fee that was available; they were frustrated by unreasonable management and an unwilling fighter.”
Diaz and his manager, Willie Savannah, reportedly turned down what appeared to have been a done deal for the rematch.
“Since that fight, there's been so much controversy,” Diaz recently remarked in his own interview with BoxingScene.com. “There's just been so much stuff, people talking about that I lost, other people talking about that I won. But that's just boxing, that's the way it is.”
With the rematch against Diaz seemingly dead, Malignaggi now seeks out his next opponent in hopes of continuing his run back to the top of the Junior Welterweight rankings where he formally held the IBF World Title. One of the names being tossed out there is British fighter Amir Khan, but only speculation exists right now. It is believed that Malignaggi will likely sit out the rest of 2009 since the rematch with Diaz does not appear to be on the docket.