Hatton - Maussa: Unification at 140

16.11.05 - By Michael Montero: Next Saturday in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England – inside the Hallam FM Arena – the current IBF and WBA Light Welterweight titlists will square off in what promises to be an entertaining bout. Here’s a quick preview of the fight:

Carlos Maussa – WBA 140 titlist, Columbian, 34 years in age, 5’10 ½” in height, 73” reach

Maussa carries a professional record of 20-2-0 (18 KOs). He was competitive in his two losses (one to current WBO titlist Miguel Cotto) and is coming off an impressive upset of former WBA champ Vivian Harris – having defeated him via 7th round KO on the under card of the June 25th Gatti-Mayweather PPV bout. His style is ugly but very difficult for opponent to figure out, and he always brings it when he’s in the ring.

Ricky Hatton – IBF 140 titlist, British, 27 years in age, 5’6” in height, 65” reach.

. Hatton boasts an unblemished professional record of 39-0-0 (29 KOs). The stocky Brit can be described as a “busy” fighter – he gets up in his opponent’s chest from the second the bell rings and looks just as fresh in the 12th round as most fighters do in the 1st. He is currently considered the “linear champ” of the 140 pound division via his 11th round TKO victory over Kostya Tszyu back on June 4th in Manchester. In defeating Tszyu, Hatton beat “the man” and thus became “the man” – that is until somebody beats him.

On paper it would seem that Carlos Maussa has the edge in this match due to his clear size advantage (4 ½” in height as well as 8” in reach. Then again, others may say that Ricky Hatton has the edge as this fight is in his homeland of England (not to mention the age factor – being 7 years younger). I say it’s a close fight, but I give a slight edge to Hatton. I feel that in the beginning rounds Maussa will use his reach and awkward style to ward Hatton off – however the Brit will constantly pressure the Columbian and begin to cut the ring off by the middle rounds. Only 6 of Maussa’s pro fights have gone beyond the 4th round, while 18 of Hatton’s have. Ricky is used to fighting late, his conditioning is always top notch, and he has the chin to handle Carlos’ punches. Therefore, I predict that Maussa wears down in the later rounds, and we see a late TKO victory for Ricky Hatton next Saturday.

NOTES (things to look forward to):

I have to admit that I was sick when I heard about the cancellation of Klitschko-Rahman as I was looking forward to this fight emphatically. It’s tough when, as a die hard fan, you are looking forward to an event and it’s taken away at the last moment. However, I was quickly pulled out of my brief depression upon learning of the upcoming super-fight between 168 pound kingpins Jeff Lacy and Joe Calzaghe. Apparently this fight is to take place in either February or March of 2006. Personally I’ll believe it when I see it – but if this thing really does happen it will completely make me forget about the disappointment of Klitschko-Rahman. The winner of this contest will carry the IBF, IBO, WBO and RING belts – and will have to enter everybody’s pound for pound top-ten list by default. I have to give the advantage to Lacy (although my heart’s with the Italian Dragon) in this one based purely on youth and strength – however if this fight takes place in Calzaghe’s prime I believe it’s an easy points victory for the Welshman…

Whether or not that Super Middleweight MEGA-fight takes place or not – we have two rematches coming up that everybody wants to see. First we have the Taylor-Hopkins rematch on December 3rd, and then Pacquiao-Morales II on January 21st. I’m not exactly sure how I feel about these fights just yet, but my gut is telling me that both Hopkins and Pacquiao get their revenge in these match-ups. However my predictions may change as these bouts draw closer…

For my fellow heavyweight fans that are down in the dumps (with me) upon learning of Vitali Klitschko’s retirement, don’t fret because there are some interesting fights coming up, and a few “hopefuls” to keep an eye on. Undefeated prospect Calvin Brock will take on veteran slugger David Tua on January 28th. Will Brock win and prove he’s worthy of a title shot – or will Tua win and show that he is definitely back? This fight is free on HBO (thank God) so even if you are only moderately interested in the heavies, you should check it out as the winner will probably get a title shot sometime in 2006. Fellow prospect Samuel Peter has a mid December “stay busy” fight, and Audley Harrison will take on fellow Brit Danny Williams in December as well. This will be Harrison’s biggest test to date against a guy who can take a punch. Also, baby brother Wladimir Klitschko is still the IBF and WBO mandatory so we should see him fight for a title in ’06 as well. This is his chance to step out of his older brother’s shadow and prove that, although flawed, he is a worthy champion.

Questions and comments - – ciao!

Article posted on 16.11.2005

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