Malignaggi sure UK Brook fight would sell, talks Chaves / Thurman
Paulie Malignaggi is still unclear on whether he has a long-term future in the sport as the Italian-American gears up for his homeland debut in Milan on Saturday night.
The 34 year-old fulfils a lifelong dream of contesting a bout in Italy when facing Laszlo Fazekas over eight rounds at the Teatro Principe and will make a decision on his immediate future once his assesses his performance.
Should Malignaggi do sufficiently well to prolong his career, ‘The Magic Man’ is open to a clash with IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook in order to check another marker off his bucket list by fighting in the UK again.
British fans have been pleading with Malignaggi to return following victory over Lovemore Ndou prior to his clash with Ricky Hatton and the New Yorker will only know if that can happen after Saturday night.
“I’m sure a fight with Kell Brook would sell well in the UK if I can get some wins and what not, but like I’ve said before, it all depends on how I feel after my fight in Italy,” Malignaggi told World Boxing News.
“I think Keith Thurman and Kell Brook are the best welterweights right now. I don’t know whether they will fight each other, but they are the most dangerous welterweights out there.
“Brook really does look phenomenal every time he fights and if he keeps his head straight, stay out of trouble and keep focused I think the sky is the limit for him.
“Thurman is also a big threat and I think taking over from Floyd Mayweather is between him and Brook. They have both elevated themselves above everyone else in the division, in my eyes.”
Brook battles Diego Chaves on home soil in Sheffield next month, although has struggled to nail down the bigger names of the division – something Malignaggi is confident will be just a matter of time for the Yorkshireman.
“I think the big fights will come for Brook in time and Diego Chaves is no slouch,” the two-weight world champion stated.
“He’s a legitimate threat, you know and he gave Thurman his toughest fight thus far. I thought he has giving Thurman a lot of trouble early on in their fight.
“Also, I think Chaves got a raw deal in the Brandon Rios fight and Vic Drakulich did a horrible job refereeing that fight, so I think Chaves has been put in some very tough situations and he has performed very well when you consider those situations.
“Chaves is a sturdy fighter with some danger to him and I think it’s a good fight. Brook being a phenomenal fighter means he should handle Chaves, but I don’t think he is a gimme by any stretch,” added Malignaggi.