Welterweight contender Marcos Maidana spoke to RingTV.com about 90 minutes before signing a contract with high-powered boxing manager/advisor Al Haymon on Wednesday at the home of his manager, Sebastian Contursi, who translated the interview from Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Maidana (33-3, 30 knockouts) has aligned with Haymon, who is considered by many to be the most powerful and influential man in boxing, with the goal of gaining a November bout with newly-crowned WBA 147-pound beltholder Adrien “The Problem” Broner (27-0, 22 KOs), for whom he is the mandatory challenger.
Maidana’s move follows that of countryman Lucas Matthysse, whom Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer will be in the most lucrative fight of his career against unbeaten RING junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia for his WBA and WBC belts on the undercard of the Sept. 14, Showtime Pay Per View-televised clash between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Canelo Alvarez at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Since falling to IBF beltholder to Devon Alexander in his 147-pound debut to February of last year, Maidana has come up with three consecutive stoppages, including those over Jesus Soto Karass and Josesito Lopez in September and June in the eighth and sixth-rounds, respectively.
Soto Karass rebounded with victories over Selcuk Aydin and Andre Berto by unanimous decision and 12th-round stoppage in January and last month, respectively, lending credence to Maidana’s assertion that he has adapted to the welterweight division.
Maidana admits to having had trouble with skillful boxer-punchers in the past, including Alexander, Amir Khan and Andriy Kotelnik who have beaten him, as well as ex-beltholders Erik Morales and DeMarcus Corley, who troubled him before losing decisions.
But during this Q&A, below, Maidana says that his past experiences in those fights will help him against Broner.
RingTV.com: Why do you want to sign with Haymon?
Marcos Maidana: Well, it’s because I believe that Al Haymon can help to provide me with the big fights that I want, and with the big purses that I want.
I think that it’s an intriguing agreement, and an interesting agreement, and I’m sure that the big fights are coming because of working with Al.
So I am at my manager’s home, in Buenos Aires, and we’re working on the final details, and after that, I will sign today.
RingTV.com: How much of an influence was your countryman, Matthysse’s signing with Haymon and, after that, landing the big fight with Garcia?
MM: Not really. Not really. I didn’t really take a look at what Lucas Matthysse did. I’m happy for him, but that was not really influential on my career or my decision.
But it was the fact that I know that there are great fighters working with Al, and after speaking with my manager, Sebastian Contursi, we had this great opportunity to fight the elite fighters, especially, Adrien Broner.
So I am very sure that Al can get me Adrien Broner, and that’s the most interesting part of this agreement, and why I am going to sign with Al Haymon.
RingTV.com: Why will the result against Broner be any different than that with Alexander?
MM: To be honest with you, this is something that I never spoke about before, because I didn’t want to make any excuses, and I didn’t want to take anything away from Devon Alexander.
But I wasn’t really fit that day. I had a stomach infection on the night that I fought Devon Alexander. I’m not making excuses, but I wasn’t feeling well that day, and everybody knows that.
But with Adrien Broner, it will be a different story, because I am feeling really well now and I’m eager to fight him and I will be very, very prepared.
I don’t know how it will go, and I don’t want to make any promises about a knockout or anything, but one thing is for sure — I will hit him. I will punch him. I am sure that I have a great chance to knock Broner out.
RingTV.com: Do you think that Broner has faced anyone who hits as hard as you do?
MM: No. I think that Broner has faced opponents who have pretty much respected Broner too much. I don’t know why. But one thing is for sure, and that is that I won’t respect Broner.
I will try to punch him anywhere and in any way that I can. I will have no respect for him. I just want to punch him badly and that’s all. I’m not the kind of fighter who has too much respect for his opponent.
RingTV.com: Having fought four fights as a welterweight with three straight knockouts, do you feel, now, that you have completely adjusted to the weight class?
MM: Yes. Apart from the Devon Alexander fight, in which, like I said before, I wasn’t feeling well, and it was also a case of lack of preparation for the Alexander fight, maybe we made a lot of mistakes.
Apart from that one, now, I feel very strong and I feel as if I have adapted to the welterweight division, and I think that I belong. I definitely belong in the welterweight division.
RingTV.com: What is your response to the notion tht you have had problems with boxers such as Corley, Kotelnik, Khan and Morales who have given you some movement, and that Broner is perhaps better than them?
MM: Of course, those were difficult fights, and Broner is a very, very skilled fighter and boxer as well. But I feel that now, at this stage of my career, that I am much more experienced.
I have gained a lot of experience as a result of facing the boxers that you have mentioned, and now I think that I have the tools to solve “The Problem.”
RingTV.com: If you were in a room alone with Broner, what would you say to him?
MM: [Laughs] Just to get into the ring and to give me the opportunity to fight him.
Photos by Tom Casino, Showtime
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com