Team Hatton pictured above in victory.
By: Pete Goldthorpe
Latest Boxing News - On Saturday night we saw a fantastic end to November for British Boxing with Ricky Hatton (45-1-0) wrapping up a month of trilogy wins over American Boxers for Calzaghe, Haye and now the worlds biggest ticket seller Ricky Hatton. With legendary trainer Floyd Mayweather Sr now in his corner Hatton took on Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi (25-2-0) on boxing biggest stage the MGM Grand Las Vegas and the bout also being featured on HBO television. Both fighters successfully made weight on Friday with Hatton dead on the limit at 140lbs compared to Malignaggi’s 139lbs. Hatton’s put his Ring Magazine and IBO World Championship belts on the line while Malignaggi had to give up his IBF World Championship Belt in order secure this bout. Malignaggi was aiming to get his name recognized with the elite boxers of the world and a victory over Hatton would have gotten him a step closer. While Hatton was looking to get by Malignaggi and set up a mega fight with the winner of the December 6 clash between De La Hoya and Pacquiao.
Hatton with his usual large entourage of fans who made another trip to Vegas demonstrated a disciplined game plan executed to perfection. After a first round jab fest by Malignaggi, who connected several times causing slight swelling to Hatton’s left eye, Hatton dominated the rest of the fight. In the second round Hatton landed a big right hand hook visibly dazing Malignaggi who immediately held on for survival. Malignaggi suffering a small cut under his left eye, it was evident that Malignaggi would have difficulty dealing with the stronger Hatton. Hatton was now starting to get into the angles showing his improved technique under Mayweather Sr. The two spent several weeks in Vegas training, with Hatton running four miles a day up Mount Charleston in order to the lose the thirty pounds he gained between fights.
Malignaggi in the forth round kept distance between himself and Hatton by using his jab and was also able to land a rear right hand. Malignaggi wanting no part of Hatton’s power and not wanting to mix it up with Hatton did most of his fighting at a distance. During the round it appeared Hatton’s left eye was slowly starting to increase swelling from the jabs absorbed from Malignaggi.
The middle rounds showed Malignaggi grabbing and holding under immense Hatton pressure. Malignaggi already looking the beaten fighter was no threat let alone doing any significant damage to Hatton whose power was proving the difference along with his relentless pressure. Hatton would not let Malignaggi get into any rhythm and was landing clean shots which were set up by his jab, rather ironically Hatton was out jabbing the jabber.
As the fight entered the latter rounds Hatton still looking fresh and strong showed Consistent head movement which allowed him to slip Malignaggi’s shots giving Malignaggi another thing to think about. In the ninth round Hatton needed his gloves re-taped giving Malignaggi a welcomed rest, Hatton after the brief break went straight on the offensive finding his range landing good shots and even demonstrated his new found footwork. Malignaggi still being overly defensive, not wanting to be caught by Hatton’s power, the boxer Malignaggi was being out boxed. In the tenth round Hatton still looking sharp continued to find his range now more easily, Malignaggi’s style suiting Hatton perfectly. Hatton landing practically all of his shots, showing that he is too strong for the beaten New-Yorker, who at this point could only win by knock-out. Hatton looked physically fantastic not tired compared to the gasping for air Malignaggi.
The eleventh round saw Malignaggi using up every inch of the ring before a Hatton onslaught in which he landed several great hooks to the lackluster Malignaggi. Finally at 0:28 of the eleventh round Malignaggi’s trainer Buddy McGirt throws in the towel not wanting to see his lion hearted fighter take any more punishment. With his overall better performance Hatton put his critics to rest at least for now. Now all eyes shift towards the upcoming De La Hoya Vs Pacquiao bout as Hatton will surely be in the mix to fight the winner in a mega-bout perhaps at Wembley arena next year, after this performance it looks as if the best is still yet to come from Hatton.
On the undercard Ricky’s younger brother Matthew take care of Ben Tackie winning a 10 round bout by unanimous decision and in the co-feature James Kirkland defeated fellow Texan Brian Vera scoring a 8 round TKO victory.
Malignaggi and Hatton in the center of the ring.
Malignaggi connects with a right.
Sly takes in the action from ringside.
David Beckham ringside cheering Ricky Hatton on.
Malignaggi with a right to Hatton’s face.
Hatton and Malignaggi trade shots.
Hatton connects with a right to the chin of Malignaggi.
McGirt giving Malignaggi instructions between rounds.
Hatton backs Malignaggi up with a right.
Ricky Fatton enters the ring.
Hitman Hatton in victory.
Hatton and Malignaggi hug afterwards.
Hatton and the happy Floyd Mayweather Sr at the post fight press conference.
Matthew Hatton and Ben Tackie exchange blows.
Matthew Hatton connects with a right to the chin of Tackie.
Matthew Hatton wins by unanimous decision.
James Kirkland pounds Brian Vera in the co-feature.
Kirkland connects with a right.
Kirkland sends Vera to the canvas.
Kirkland wins by TKO.
LATEST BOXING NEWS AND MORE PHOTOS www.diamondboxing.com