Keith Thurman hoping to get Malignaggi or Bradley in near future
By Dan Ambrose: The junior middleweight-sized unbeaten welterweight prospect Keith Thurman (18-0, 17 KO’s) will be back in the ring in November against an opponent still to be determined, according to Fighthype.com. And like before, the 23-year-old Thurman still has the following fighters on his hit list: Paulie Malignaggi, Tim Bradley and Floyd Mayweather Jr. Thurman, 5’11”, wants to get Malignaggi, the WBA World welterweight champion, next after Thurman fights in November.
However, with Thurman not even ranked in then top 15 in the welterweight division he needs to save his breath none of those guys are going to voluntarily fight a huge welterweight without a ranking. Thurman needs to get ranked and prove that he can beat a quality fighter rather than just the weak 2nd tier welterweights he’s been facing.
Thurman didn’t look all that impressive in beating Orlando Lora last July, as he was backed up continuously in the fight and seemed to be overly reliant on his left hook. The speed wasn’t there for Thurman and he did a lot of slapping with his shots.
Thurman looks more like a middleweight than a welterweight, and at 23, it’s highly doubtful that he’ll be able to continue to fight at welterweight for much longer unless he plans on following the Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. plan by melting down 20 pounds each time he fights. Thurman would be better off moving up to 154 and trying to get a fight with WBC junior middleweight champion Saul Alvarez or Miguel Cotto. I think that’s Thurman’s fugure unless he’s looking to make a career out of fighting smaller welterweights to try and get an advantage.
I don’t blame him for doing that, because his size seems to be the only thing he has going for him at welterweight. Thurman looks a lot heavier the guys he’s facing, and if he moves up to 154, he won’t have much of any advantage anymore. Thurman would still be a really heavy fighter at junior middleweight, and I could see him rehydrating up to 165, but that’s not a really big weight advantage like the one he has now in melting down to 147 to fight lighter guys. Saul Alvarez is a lot more skilled than Thurman, as is Cotto, Vanes Martirosyan and Erislandy Lara.
It’s not surprising that Thurman wants to fight Bradley and Malignaggi. Those guys are much lighter than him and he’s likely be sporting a 15 pound weight advantage or more against those guys. The weight would win the fight for Thurman unless there were strict rehydration limits for the fight. At any rate, Thurman isn’t going to be fighting any of those guys until he picks up a top five ranking at welterweight, and by the time that happens Thurman will probably be unable to make welterweight no matter how hard he tries.
Thurman needs to stay quiet until he actually starts beating some quality fighters and receives a ranking. It just makes him look kind of silly to be talking about fighting Bradley, Malignaggi and Mayweather when he’s not even ranked in the top 15.
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