Adrien Broner and Marcos Maidana are set for battle on December 14, when Broner defends his WBA welterweight title against the hard-punching Argentinean fan favorite on Showtime from San Antonio. The two met up today for their first press conference to officially announce the fight, and each made a strong opening statement.
"Maidana is one-dimensional and not in my league," said Broner (27-0, 22 KO). "I'm a Ferrari and he's a go-kart and my fans will see that in my return to Texas. It's been over four years since I've fought there and I'm going to put on a show. Watch me light Maidana up like a Christmas tree on Dec. 14."
"Everyone knows that Broner has a big mouth, but that doesn't bother me, because his mouth can't fight for him," said Maidana (34-3, 31 KO). "Whether he has the guts to stand in front of me or if he runs I'll definitely go for the KO and either way, I'm leaving the ring with the belt."
Promoter Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions is also excited about the matchup, as most are, and says he's expecting a late entry into the Fight of the Year race.
"On paper this is the classic boxer versus puncher matchup, but Broner is also willing to stand and trade and Maidana can box, so I'm expecting this to be a Fight of the Year candidate to end 2013," said CEO of Golden Boy Promotions Schaefer. "There's a lot on the line for both fighters and I can't wait to see who comes out of the 'Danger Zone' with the belt."
San Antonio appears to be a new regular destination for Golden Boy, who seem intent on building regular followings in cities that support boxing. Golden Boy has of course run in and around the LA area for years at venues like the Staples Center (which has not proven itself as a boxing venue) and the StubHub Center (which has), and of course has their deal with the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, which has really worked out wonderfully. 40,000 fans came out for Canelo-Trout in April of this year, opening some eyes to San Antonio as a potential major fight city.
Local promoter Mike Battah, who works with Golden Boy when they're in Texas, believes it can be one.
"With five amazing fights and boxing's top stars, I can't think of anyplace better to have this event than in San Antonio," said Battah, the President of Leija*Battah Promotions. "As shown with the Canelo Alvarez-Austin Trout fight, this is a city that loves and supports the sport, and I can't wait to see the Alamodome filled once again on Dec. 14."
Showtime's Stephen Espinoza has led a minor revolution in the American boxing game, working closely with Golden Boy and raising the network's profile substantially in 2013. He believes this is a fitting end to a big year.
"This has been an outstanding year for boxing on Showtime, and I can't think of any better way to end 2013 than with a stacked card like this one. Adrien Broner vs Marcos Maidana is a dream matchup between two of the biggest names in the welterweight division. Keith Thurman and Jesus Soto Karass are two of the most aggressive, hard-hitting fighters in any division," said Espinoza. "We've also got one of the sport's top young fighters in Leo Santa Cruz. Add in the return of Victor Ortiz, and it's clear that this truly is a can't-miss event. It's a pay per view-quality event without the pay per view price tag."
The undercard will feature Thurman vs Soto Karass, Victor Ortiz vs Alfonso Gomez, and a pair of world title fights, as Leo Santa Cruz takes on Cesar Seda Jr in a 122-pound WBC title fight, and Beibut Shumenov defends his WBA 175-pound belt against Tamas Kovacs.