Broner to pack a punch

  • By: Simon Crawford
  • Last Updated: June 20 2013, 12:46 BST

Our Simon Crawford is backing Adrien Broner to stop Paulie Malignaggi in this weekend's big fight in Brooklyn.

Adrien Broner: Jumping up two weight divisions
Adrien Broner: Jumping up two weight divisions

Adrien Broner puts his explosive punching power to the test when he takes on the durable Paulie Malignaggi in Brooklyn this weekend.

Broner, 23, is touted by many to be top of the current best pound-for-pound list and certainly a record of 26-0, with 22 wins coming inside the distance, is one to be admired.

But the twist in the tail is that Broner - the current undefeated WBC lightweight and two-division world champion - is moving up two weight divisions to take on WBA welterweight champion Malignaggi in his native New York.

It appears to be a calculated gamble on behalf of the Broner camp. Although 32-year-old Malignaggi (32-4, 7KOs) is vastly experienced, his record tells you that he is not a big puncher.

To his credit, he has only been stopped twice in a distinguished career and those stoppages came at the hands of Britons Ricky Hatton and Amir Khan, with his other losses coming against Miguel Cotto and Juan Diaz.

But it seems as though Broner sees his weekend foe as the weak link of the welterweight division and seems perfectly happy that he will be able to nail his man.

It had been expected that Broner would take on Scotland's Ricky Burns in a unification showdown. That could still happen somewhere down the line - but there can be no slip-ups against Malignaggi.

"Basically, I'm just going to go in the ring and do what I do best, and that's get the victory," said Broner.

"I'm really not worrying about jumping weight classes. You know I know that I'm going to do a lot of great things in this sport and I'm going to do them differently. So with that being said, you will see something explosive.

"He's bringing pillows to a fight that I'm throwing bricks, so you should see a lot of blood, a lot of bruising before the referee stops the fight.

"I walk around at 147, 150lbs so I'm at my regular weight. What a lot of people don't understand is you can't really do nothing for power; you're either born with it or you aren't."

Malignaggi has revived his career since his loss to Khan in 2010, rebounding with five straight wins including his welterweight title triumph over Vyecheslav Senchenko in Ukraine last April, and is full of confidence.

"If you look at my opponents they all get their ass beat don't they?" he said.

"I mean do they all not wind up looking like their face went through a window at the end of the fight, especially recently?

"I don't see why Adrien Broner's face is going to look different at the end of the fight. He will wind up looking like they put his face in a blender when I'm done with him."

Broner goes into the fight as a heavy odds-on favourite, with Malignaggi widely available at 8s if you think an upset is on the cards.

I do think that Broner will extend his unbeaten record - but I don't think it will be the early stoppage many are predicting.

There has been plenty of trash-talking in the build-up, but once the bell rings Broner will have to show Malignaggi respect.

But in the end his power will prove too much and with Malignaggi lacking a serious weapon to come back with, I'm going to take Broner to win between rounds five and eight.

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