The welterweight division is considered to be one of the best and most exciting divisions in the sport. There are currently 3 undefeated belt holders in the weight class, as well as some of the biggest stars in boxing. Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman is looking to break through the pack and land the big fights that can bring him to the top of the weight class.
In part 2 of my interview with Keith Thurman, he talks about the biggest upcoming fight at 147 pounds, Mayweather- Maidana II and what Maidana can do differently. Thurman also breaks down Pacquiao-Algieri and gives his thoughts on possibly facing either Timothy Bradley or Manny Pacquiao. Here is what Keith Thurman had to say.
Jenna J: Do you think Marcos Maidana can do anything different in the rematch to make the fight closer, or his style just his style?
Keith Thurman: Definitely. If I was Maidana, I would watch the tape and what I would do is, be aggressive but not overly aggressive. Pretty much like what happened to Shawn Porter. You land a good punch, that’s nice, you land a clean effective punch, there’s no need to force more punches after one or two nice punches.
If everybody in the crowd sees the punch, then everyone is gonna give you credit — the judges, the commentators, the fans, they’re gonna go “Ohh” and “Ahh” over the punch. When you rush at him just because you landed one good punch, not only are you opening yourself to be countered, but a lot of times the way that Maidana moves forward so much that he ends up smothering himself, which allows Floyd to tie him up and do a whole lot of other things.
If I was Maidana, every once in a while you’re gonna get on the inside and you’re gonna rough him up, but every once in a while, step back. Use that jab a little bit more. In the later rounds in the fight — I think maybe a little bit due to Maidana getting a little tired — he was fighting on the outside, and yeah Floyd was connecting a little bit, but Floyd really wasn’t connecting the way he normally connects.
If I was Maidana, I would try to do a little bit better on the outside, and that way he’d be able to throw more effective punching. He needs to get some straight rights and left hooks with some distance, instead of smothered this time. We’ll see what kinds of adjustments he makes, or if he just tries to fight harder.
Jenna J: One more fight I want to ask you about is Manny Pacquiao vs. Chris Algieri. A lot of people are canning this fight, saying Algieri doesn’t have a shot. What do you think?
Keith Thurman: Hey, when you step in the ring and you put gloves on, anybody has a shot. It really all has to do with the training camp. He has a height advantage I believe, he has a reach advantage, the kid showed decent skills. I don’t think he’s unbeatable by any means, but he’s got some talent and he’s made it to the world class stage. If he keeps training like a champion, he may stay a champion.
It is obvious that Manny is favored. We saw what happened with Provodnikov’s power punching, so you would assume that Manny’s power punching would be just as effective, and then Manny’s speed would make it more difficult for Algieri and most likely it’s gonna allow Manny to land more power punches than Provodnikov was able to do when he fought Algieri.
It’s not one that people aren’t really super eager to see or really talk about, but it’s a match nonetheless and there’s a potential upset, once again. He did it once, can he do it twice? That’s the big question.
Jenna J: Timothy Bradley recently said that he would be interested in fighting you. Is he a big enough opponent that would interest you?
Keith Thurman: Definitely. Timothy is a big name, he’s been around and I would be able to make a big statement with getting a victory, and especially a KO victory over Timothy Bradley.
Jenna J: Now that Oscar De La Hoya says he’s willing to work with Bob Arum, do you think a fight between you and Pacquiao could ever possibly be made?
Keith Thurman: Possibly, we’ll have to see. Pacquiao has yet to fight a Golden Boy fighter. I don’t know how many more fights Pacquiao really plans on having in his career. I haven’t really heard him talk about retirement or anything like that. I still don’t know what Pacquiao plans on doing with his future.
Right now I see myself possibly getting a Timothy Bradley fight with one of Bob Arum’s fighters before possibly getting the Manny Pacquiao fight. You never know how it’s truly gonna go.
Jenna J: You had the shoulder injury, how’s that going? Do you think you will be 100% by the time you get back in the ring?
Keith Thurman: Yeah, I’ve consulted a specialist and he told me that for the most part nothing is torn. It doesn’t seem to be a major issue, but it was enough to pull back from the September date. We’re looking to get back in October or November.
I’ve been doing therapy with bands, and stretching, just doing everything that the doctor recommended so that I can have a speedy recovery and get back in the ring, and give you guys the action packed fights that you guys enjoy.
Jenna J: You got a lot of fans around the world, is there any message you want to pass along to them?
Keith Thurman: Thank you for all your love and support. Sorry I couldn’t pull off three fights for you guys this year, but I’m gonna do my best to return to the ring as soon as possible and hopefully give you guys a fight truly worth watching — whether it be Kell Brook, Timothy Bradley or anybody else that’s rated in the top 10 of the welterweight division.