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Hatton to hire Floyd, Sr. as new trainer

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Mayweathersr_medium Source: Manchester Evening News

You heard it there first:

The Hitman is expected, barring last-minute hitches, to announce later this week that he will be trained by Floyd Mayweather senior for his clash with Paulie Malignaggi in Las Vegas on November 22.

And Lordy, Lordy, the war of words between potential new trainer and disgruntled ex-trainer is already on.

Billy Graham calls the alleged hiring "ludicrous" and "outrageous," saying that the elder Floyd Mayweather is "not the trainer for Ricky Hatton."

The always-colorful Floyd shot back, calling Graham "one of the worst trainers I've ever seen in my life."

And Floyd's talking like it's a done deal, too, discussing what he wants to do with Hatton, and how he'll make him better. "Hatton was fighting on his guts and his pure desire to win. He fought with a lot of pressure, a lot of hard shots and his pure will to win - that's all."

The most interesting part of this is that it could mean Hatton and Oscar de la Hoya wind up sharing some time training in October and November. Oscar fights on December 6 with Floyd back in his corner, and Hatton meets Paulie Malignaggi on November 22.

It also adds a cornball potential angle to a talked-about Hatton-Oscar fight in 2009, and I never discount Oscar's ability to start promoting fights in his head years ahead of time.

It's an interesting hire, but one can't help but get the impression that Hatton and Graham were more mates than professionals, even though they're both certainly pros at what they do. It won't be that way for Ricky with Floyd. I'd not expect Floyd to chuckle and shrug at Hatton's usual weight gains and crash diets, his seemingly indifferent attitude to conditioning, and his laid-back, anything-but-intense demeanor. But who knows? Floyd is an outstanding trainer, above all else. If anyone can add a new wrinkle to Ricky Hatton's game at this stage, it's probably him.