Paulie Malignaggi had a word for the notions that past sparring sessions with Manny Pacquiao could help upcoming rival Shawn Porter to prepare for him, and that he truly lost to Adrien Broner last June.
That word? "Bulls__t."
The 33-year-old Malignaggi (33-5, 7 knockouts) recognizes that he will be fighting "a younger, bigger guy" on April 19 in Porter (23-0-1, 14 KOs), a 26-year-old IBF welterweight titleholder who plans to "steamroll" Malignaggi when they meet at the D.C. Armory in Washington, D.C. on Showtime.
Having fought as heavy as junior middleweight and having served as a former sparring partner for eight-division titlewinner Pacquiao, Porter won the belt from Devon Alexander by unanimous decision, leaving his smaller rival cut and bloodied in December.
During a Wednesday conference call, Porter said that he considered the Alexander fight to be "a pretty good blueprint for going against somebody like Paulie," supporting that assertion with his past experiences against Pacquiao.
"You take into account everything that I've done up until this point, sparring with Manny Pacquiao, I mean, there's no better blueprint than that," said Porter, who worked with Pacquiao in advance of the Filipino icon's win over Shane Mosley in May 2011.
"The guy's got the quickest hands in the businesss, so I have all of the experience and what it takes to beat Paulie, and it's just a matter of getting in there on April 19 and doing it."
While Malignaggi admitted to being impressed by Porter's effort against Alexander, he disagreed with the titleholder's reference to Pacquiao — and that's putting it mildly.
"Shawn Porter showed that he was a force to be reckoned with when he beat Devon Alexander. All of that other bulls__t about sparring with Manny Pacquiao and all of that, I don't rate Manny Pacquiao as a very good fighter," said Malignaggi.
"I don't rate him as a very intelligent fighter, actually, so all of that other bulls__t about the sparring and all of that, to me, that goes in one ear and out the other. But what Shawn did to Devon was very impressive, and it certainly put him in a different light in a lot of different ways, and in a lot of more positive ways."
Malignaggi rose from a second-round knockdown in his last fight to score a unanimous decision over ex-beltholder Zab Judah in December. In the victory over Judah, Malignaggi restored his “Magic Man” nickname while rebounding from a split-decision loss last June to Broner, who dethroned Malignaggi as WBA 147-pound titlist.
"I think that as far as I'm concerned, I haven't lost at all in the last three years. It's just that Adrien Broner was given my world title, and I feel like I need to win another world title to rightfully get what's mine. I deserve to be a world champion, I should not have lost that belt," said Malignaggi.
"I basically became a filler for Adrien Broner's bulls__t resume that he has. My name just became a filler on that resume and for that reason I need to get another world title to redeem myself and get what is rightfully mine. It's a world championship that I want, and now, I get the chance to do it."
Malignaggi believes that he can neutralize Porter's aggressiveness.
"Shawn has a tendancy to fight very hard, and that's not a bad thing at all. But in professional boxing, you have 12 rounds and that leaves a lot of time to set traps and to do a lot of things," said Malignaggi.
"So aggressiveness can be made to pay, and that's kind of my bread and butter and that's always been my blueprint… I make aggressiveness pay. We'll feel like we have a good game plan for that kind of aggressiveness. We expect to have answers for that kind of high intensity fight."
Porter dictated a physical fight against Alexander, ending the loser's winning streak at four consecutive bouts since falling in January 2011 to Tim Bradley, the current WBO 147-pound beltholder.
A former junior middleweight managed and trained by his father, Kenny, Porter’s defeat of Alexander followed last September’s unanimous decision over ex-lightweight beltholder Julio Diaz that made up for their December 2012 draw.
Porter said that he gained little from Malignaggi's loss to Broner, calling it "smoke and mirrors" to look at that fight.
"That really wasn't one of the fights that I'm watching to get ready for Paulie… I know what I'm up against on April 19. I'm up against a crafy veteran and someone who has good hand speed and who is smart with his hands and he's in shape," said Porter.
"We will be prepared to do whatever it takes to hold on to this title, and whatever it takes to get Paulie out of that ring. I'm prepared to come in there and to be in just as great of shape as he's in and to be just as smart as he is. I am the IBF champion, and I plan to stay that way."
Malignaggi and Porter did agree on one thing: Each believes Porter would beat Broner.
"I thought Adrien could punch at first, but it turns out he actually couldn't punch for s__t… I actually think that I'm fighting a better opponent than Adrien Broner. I think that if you matched up Shawn Porter and Adrien Broner, I think that Shawn Porter beats him every time strictly on the grind. Adrien Broner doesn't like to fight," said Maliganggi.
"I think Shawn would force him to fight at a pace that he wouldn't like, and like we saw in the Marcos Maidana fight, he doesn't have an answer when you force him to fight at a pace that he doesn't like. I think that I've got a better opponent in front of me and I think that I've got a more worthy world champion in front of me."
"I feel the same way. I think that I'm one of the best welterweights out there and feel like I have everything that it takes. The mentality, the strength, the heart," said Porter.
"Everything that it takes to become a world champion and to be a world champion, I think that I have all of that. Like Paulie said, I'm extremely competitive. I would not be fighting Paulie Malignaggi if he was a filler fighter or if he was somebody to just get into the ring and to showcase my skills against. We don't accept anything but the best."
Malignaggi-Porter will be the second bout on a Showtime-televised card headlined by the 175-pound title unification bout between the IBF's Bernard Hopkins and the WBA's Beibut Shumenov at the D.C. Armory in Washington, D.C. The event will also include Peter Quillin's third defense of his WBO middleweight title against Lukas Konecny.
Tickets are priced at $25, $50, $75, $200 and $300 and are on sale now and available online at http://www.ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster locations or by calling (800) 745-3000. The D.C. Armory Box Office will be open on fight night only from 3 p.m.-10 p.m., ET.