Junior Witter Turns Attention To Malignaggi

By Matthew Hurley: After a week of calling out Ricky Hatton for a bout he has longed for, World Boxing Council junior welterweight champion Junior Witter is shifting his focus to International Boxing Federation champion Paulie Malignaggi. In the wake of his loss to Floyd Mayweather on December 8th Hatton’s future, whether it’s will he retire – he won’t, will he remain with trainer Billy Graham – he will, will he drop back down to junior welterweight – he probably will, and who he will fight next – he doesn’t know, has been ruminated on endlessly in the past week and a half. One thing camp Hatton has said, however, is that he has no plans to fight Junior Witter..

“Ricky will never fight Junior Witter as long as he keeps slagging him off in public,” Hatton’s attorney Gareth Williams told the Daily Mail.

Witter tried to goad Hatton into a battle of the Brits but his verbal assaults so far have not worked.

“Look, Ricky thinks I have disrespected him but I think he has got in my way getting all the attention (I deserve). He has shied away (from me), but I am number one (as) recognized by The Ring magazine and he just lost to Floyd.”

Sensing that Hatton will be taking a long sabbatical from the ring Witter has now turned his attention to Malignaggi who fights Herman Ngoudjo on January 5th at Bally’s Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City.

“As far as I know, there have been talks on the management side with Malignaggi and we’re just looking at when to do it,” Witter told his hometown Bradford’s Telegraph and Argus newspaper.

Witter went on to add that he would love to fight at Madison Square Garden, Malignaggi’s backyard.

“Madison Square Garden is the ultimate place to fight,” he said. “It would be amazing to box in the home of the sport.”

So the WBC champion will sit back and watch Malignaggi on January 5th, anticipating an eventual unification bout with the brash New Yorker. But he will also continue to call out Hatton in hopes of someday getting the Mancunian in the ring. Malignaggi may have a title belt but Hatton remains where the money is.

Article posted on 19.12.2007

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