Khan and Malignaggi stare down at MSG today.
New York City Hosts Fighters in Pre-Bout Announcement
New York, N.Y. (Tuesday, March 16, 2010) – After the European version last week at London’s Leicester Square, New York had its own press conference today at the Theatre at Madison Square Garden to announce the upcoming super fight between Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi and Amir Khan. The fight, which will be for Khan’s WBA title on May 15th, will be the first fight in New York City for the Brooklyn native Malignaggi in three years and the first-ever professional bout in the United States for Khan.
“We’re glad to be back at our real home, Madison Square Garden,” said Lou DiBella, Malignaggi promoter and owner of DiBella Entertainment. “We’re thrilled to get the opportunity to fight for the title, to fight a great young fighter. If Paulie can beat Amir Khan, he establishes himself as the superstar he always wanted to be.”
Malignaggi was also happy to be back in New York, and the media today at Madison Square Garden seemed pretty happy to have him there as well.
“Madison Square Garden is Paul Malignaggi. This is New York City. This is my city,” Malignaggi remarked today to much applause from the entire room. “(Referring to Khan) When your head starts snapping back from combinations, the crowd is gonna love it. They’re gonna want some more.”
Anthony Catanzaro, who works as a co-manager to Malignaggi, was also by the side of his fighter today.
"At the end of the day, Paulie is simply the better fighter," Catanzaro commented. "We are fighting in our house in front of our fans. Amir has a very tough task in front of him mentally. Lots of questions will be asked."
When distractions such as Manny Pacquiao were brought up today, Malignaggi was quick to let everyone where he was focused.
“May 15th, Paulie Malignaggi and Amir Khan are gonna get in the ring,” he stated. “The bell’s gonna ring, and we’re gonna settle it in there. This has nothing to do with anything else.”
With the verbal exchanges already underway between the camps of both fighters, Malignaggi next summed everything up in a quick statement.
“This is my paycheck, but I also have my pride here, too,” he said. “When I get in the ring, we throw down.”
Officials from HBO and Madison Square Garden were also at the press conference today, and they stated that ticket presale numbers are on the verge of being the highest ever for an event in the Theatre at MSG. A sellout is anticipated for this fight, but fans worldwide will be able to tune into the bout live via the HBO series Boxing After Dark.