Boxing: Adrien Broner’s problem? Power puncher Marcos Maidana


PUBLISHED Thursday, Dec 12, 2013 at 1:21 pm EST
Staff report Sporting News

It’s hard to ignore Adrien Broner, as much for his boxing ability as for his personality. While there’s plenty to like about his performance, Broner turns off observers with an attitude and actions that are far beyond likeable.

Broner, a three-time champion, holds the WBC lightweight and WBA welterweight belts, the later of which he puts on the line Saturday. He is 24, from Cincinnati and is considered a rising star because of his unquestioned talent. His nickname is “The Problem.”

Adrien Broner, right, vs. Gavin Rees in February. (AP Photo)

Too bad for him, he lives up to his moniker by being a sourpuss with a sullied reputation. A man who could be the next pound-for-pound best boxer is a polarizing figure.

So there’s reason critics will be rooting for Marcos Maidana to punch some sense into Broner in Saturday’s title fight in San Antonio. Or punch him senseless

Not that it’s a long shot. Broner is 27-0, but Maidana is 34-2 and a powerful puncher who is eager to level his opponent live on Showtime.

Broner idolizes Floyd Mayweather Jr., but could learn a few things about public perception. “The Problem” needs a solution to his inner demons. Mayweather wasn’t always revered; observers believe Broner should learn how his hero won adulation as his career took off.

Maidana, from Argentina, might just bash the brash out of Broner. After a loss to Devon Alexander, Maidana won his next three fights. He has 31 knockouts. He’d love to make Broner No. 32, thanks to an incident between them in September.

“I really wanted to beat and knock him out, even at that stage,” Maidana said. “I’ll tell you the truth, it really lightened me up and it was a motivation for me, because I’m not used to fights, or getting into arguments, or coming to blows with fellow fighters … but this guy has something special.”

Broner, the provocateur, has flaws Maidana has identified and plans to exploit. Maidana is a motivated man. That’s a dangerous combination for a champion who could well enter the ring overconfident.

Fight schedule

Dec. 13

At Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, Indio, Calif. (FS1), Josesito Lopez vs. Mike Arnaoutis, 10, welterweights; Francisco Vargas vs. Jerry Belmontes, 12, for Vargas’ NABF/WBO Intercontinental super featherweight title.

Dec. 14

At Neubrandenburg, Germany, Juergen Braehmer vs. Marcus Oliveira, 12, for the vacant WBA World light heavyweight title.

At the Alamodome, San Antonio (SHO), Adrien Broner vs. Marcos Rene Maidana, 12, for Broner’s WBA World welterweight title; Keith Thurman vs. Jesus Soto Karass, 12, for Thurman’s interim WBA World welterweight title; Leo Santa Cruz vs. Cesar Seda, 12, for Santa Cruz’s WBC super bantamweight title; Beibut Shumenov vs. Tamas Kovacs, 12, for Shumenov’s WBA Super World and IBA light heavyweight titles.

Dec. 21

At Elche, Spain, Kiko Martinez vs. Jeffrey Mathebula, 12, for Martinez’s IBF junior featherweight title.

At Leeds, England, Stuart Hall vs. Vusi Malinga, 12, for the vacant IBF bantamweight title.

Dec. 31

At Tokyo, Takashi Uchiyama vs. Daiki Kaneko, 12, for Uchiyama’s WBA World super featherweight title; Takashi Miura vs. Dante Jardon, 12, for Miura’s WBC super featherweight title.

At Osaka, Japan, Kazuto Ioka vs. Felix Alvarado, 12, for Ioka’s WBA World junior flyweght title.

Jan. 3

At Target Center, Minneapolis (ESPN2), Argenis Mendez vs. Rances Barthelemy, 12, for Mendez’s IBF super featherweight title; Caleb Truax vs. Derek Ennis, 10, middleweights.

Jan. 11

At Perwez, Belgium, Alexander Miskirtchian vs. Sofiane Takoucht, 12, IBF featherweight eliminator.

Jan. 18

At Montreal (HBO), Jean Pascal vs. Lucian Bute, 12, light heavyweights.

Jan. 30

At Barclays Center, Brooklyn, N.Y. (FS1), Victor Ortiz vs. Luis Collazo, 10, welterweights.

Contributing: Associated Press

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