NEW YORK — RingTV.com was part of a round table with Richard Schaefer on Wednesday at New York’s Madison Square Garden, where the Golden Boy CEO was in attendance for the final press conference promoting Saturday night’s Showtime-televised clash between junior middleweights Austin Trout and Miguel Cotto.
Schaefer broached a wide range of topics with reporters, including the potential for negotiating a clash between Nonito Donaire, who is handled by rival Top Rank Inc. CEO Bob Arum and fights regularly on HBO, and Abner Mares, who is promoted by Golden Boy and regularly appears on Showtime.
Schaefer also addressed what bearing the Cotto-Trout matchup has on the 154-pound division, which includes WBC titleholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, whom Golden Boy promotes and who will be ringside for Cotto-Trout.
In addition, Schaefer mulled a plethora of possibilities involving welterweight beltholders such as Robert Guerrero and Paulie Malignaggi, RING, WBA and WBC junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia, and newly-crowned WBC lightweight titleholder Adrien “The Problem” Broner, who called out Manny Pacquiao during an interview with HBO’s Max Kellerman.
Garcia, for example, has a Feb. 9 date with Zab Judah at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, but could be a viable option for Malignaggi, who is coming off last month’s split-decision victory over Pablo Cesar Cano.
Still another option for Malignaggi, winner of five straight as a welterweight during a run that has included two stoppage wins, is Amir Khan, who defeaed Malignaggi by 11th-round knockout as a junior welterweight at The Garden in May of 2010.
Whether or not Guerrero could get his much-desired shot at Floyd Mayweather Jr. was another top of discussion, as was former junior welterweight champ Ricky Hatton, whose desired rematch with Malignaggi was foiled by last Saturday’s ninth-round knockout loss to Ukrainian Vyacheslav Senchenko as Senchenko rebounded from April’s ninth-round stoppage loss to Malignaggi.
There are big plans for hard-hitting Argentine 140-pounder Lucas Matthysse, who is being targeted for a Jan. 19 appearance against an opponent to be determined on the undercard of a main event featuring Devon Alexander vs. Kell Brook somewhere in the United States.
And what of former RING light heavyweight and middleweight champ Bernard Hopkins, whom Schaefer had considered for a March 9 return to the ring at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., against one of the current 175-pound titleholders — Nathan Cleverly (WBO), Beibut Shumenov (WBA),or Tavoris Cloud (IBF)?
With a win, Hopkins, who will turn 48 in January, could eclipse his own record as the oldest man to win a significant crown, a feat the Philadelphia native accomplished at the age of 46 with a unanimous decision over Jean Pascal for the WBC’s light heavyweight belt in May of last year.
Schaefer’s comments are below:
Nonito Donaire-Abner Mares:
“I think that it’s important to maximize the money for the fighters, because they deserve it. I do think that there are some issues which I acknowledge where Bob is right and where I am right. With Donaire, HBO has invested a lot of money into Donaire with all of those fights, so it’s not right for HBO not to have a big Donaire fight.
“But Mares was built by Showtime with all of his big fights being there. They invested substantially more, frankly, than HBO did with Donaire. So it’s not really right for Showtime not to have the fight either. That’s just not right. You have to treat people with respect. But there are solutions to those issues.
“For example, a solution is let’s say that the Mares side and the Donaire side agree on a split. Say, for argument’s sake, 50-50. Okay, then let Arum go to the people he works with — TV Azteca in Mexico, Tecate, HBO, in the Philippines he deals with ABS-CBN. Go and talk to them and get the best offer.
“I’m going to do the same with Corona, with Showtime, with Televisa in Mexico, with Solar in the Philippines, and lets see who comes up with more money. So he puts a number in a sealed envelope, I put a number in a sealed envelope, and we sit down at a table, open the envelope, and whoever has the bigger number is the promoter of the event.
“It’s as simple as that, and we’ve already agreed on the split. So if he puts in a bigger number, it’s his, and we just get paid and we show up. Then, you know what? I don’t have to feel badly if we don’t get it, because our partners didn’t come up with the right amount.
“So don’t blame me. The same on his side. If his envelope has the smaller amount, then they can’t blame Bob, because it’s a fair game. That’s a solution. By the way, it doesn’t mean that whoever does not have the bigger number doesn’t get their logo and their tickets and to be at the press conference.
“This is not about disrepecting one another, it’s about getting a fight done. The losing promoter would still be at the podium during press conferences, and would still have his banner up, and would share in whatever other bells and whistles go with the promotion.
“But, again, this is not about being disrespectful. If you really want to get it done, then what’s fairer than that. Because then, if Showtime doesn’t get it, or HBO doesn’t get it, then they can’t go and blame Bob or myself.”
Saul “Canelo” Alvarez vs. the Miguel Cotto-Austin Trout winner:
“Well, I think that a potential Cotto-Canelo fight obviously would be huge. That would remind me of the Oscar De La Hoya-Felix Trinidad fight.
“There, you had this classic Mexico-Puerto Rico showdown. That’s why Canelo is coming in and he’s going to see what’s going to happen here on Saturday night.”
If Trout wins:
“Well, in the event that Trout wins, I think we have to see about what fashion in which Trout wins, and then, we’ll have to make an assessment on it, and I will have to talk to Canelo.”
On whether Mayweather still is in the picture for Alvarez:
“Well, you know, as I said to the media following last Saturday’s win by Robert Guerrero over Andre Berto, that I’m going to see if Robert can get that Mayweather fight.
“Robert really wants that Mayweather fight, and so I’m going to see what I can do. I’ve already started negotiations for the Guerrero fighting Mayweather, so we’ll see where it’s going to end.”
“Peter Quillin will most likely be in against Jermain Taylor, and we will have Danny Jacobs fighting as well, based on how this weekend goes.”
“Could I see one of the 140-pounders maybe move up and fight Paulie? Maybe Danny Garcia? Yeah, we have to see what happens. Maybe an Adrien Broner. I don’t know.
This is the kind of stuff that I’m going to have to discuss with lie my matchmakers. But Paulie wants a big fight, and the plan is to have Paulie back, probably in April at The Barclays Center. So I’m going to have to see what date we can get.”
Amir Khan-Paulie Malignaggi II:
“A lot has happened. If you think about it, that first time they fought, with what happened with Khan, and what happened with Paulie, it’s sort of like they went in opposite directions. Now, at 147, it might be a different fight.”
“Victor Ortiz is another one. Victor Ortiz and Paulie, I wouldn’t mind seeing that. If it’s against Paulie, I would want to have Paulie fight him at The Barclays Center. I think that Paulie deserves to be fighting from his home town.
“So I want to have him fight at The Barclays Center. Victor is going to be ready to go in March or early April, and that’s when we plan to get him back. I think that he doesn’t want any tuneups.
“So could I see a fight with him and Paulie, maybe here at The Barclays Center? Yes, I can definitely see that, and so, we’ll see. From a timing point of view, it might work out as well.”
“You talk about losing in exciting fashion, Andre Berto, the loss to Victor Ortiz was actually the Fight of The Year, and this one here with Guerrero could be.
“So he’s in like in two of the Fight of The Year candidates, and who would not want to see him again? Could I see, potentially, a fight between Paulie and an Andre Berto? Yes, maybe.”
“He has made a decision that he doesn’t want to fight. He wants to call it a day, and I respect that decision. He knows what is best.
“When people ask me if I think he should retire, you know, that’s not up to me to make the decisions. That’s up to the fighters, because they know best where they stand.
“Ricky just feels that it is time for him to stop, and that he just can’t perform at the level that he wants to perform at, and therefore, he feels that it’s better to walk away. So, that’s what happened.”
“Ahmet Oner is going to be his manager. He’s a very exciting guy, and he fought a very exciting fight against ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero.”
“We were planning on having Matthysse fight later on. He was supposed to fight in December in Argentina, but the fight fell through.
“So he’s been training, and instead of waiting until February, we’ve decided to give him an opportunity to fight in January, which he likes.
“So we’re working on finalizing an opponent for him. Eric Gomez is working on that, and we should finally have something in the next few days. He’ll be fighting at 140.”
“I’m working on Bernard’s fight. He wants to fight for a title. But it seems that, from the three champions, Shumenov doesn’t want to fight him because he feels that Bernard is his idol.
“Cleverly seems to be under the situation where it looks like he has to do a mandatory, and Tavoris Cloud, it looks like he will have to do a mandatory as well, so we’ll have to see what exactly the plan is going to be.”
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Photos by Tom Casino, Showtime
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Photo by Tom Casino, Showtime
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org