That boxing is a zero-sum endeavor was plainly apparent when Ricky Hatton, in front of 19,999 fans at Manchester Arena in England -- I have to figure his foe's missus was there to root him on -- went down from a left hook to the liver, and couldn't rise before the count of 10.
Or was it? His foe on Saturday night, Vyacheslav Senchenko, featured almost a rueful look on his face after it sunk in what he'd done, which was take a little piece of Hatton's heart out, chew it up and spit it in the face of The Hitman's adoring masses. It looked as though part of Senchenko wanted to follow the Hatton fan script, which would have had Ricky KO the Ukrainian ... and then gallop to New York and whup Paulie Malignaggi and wrest away his WBA welterweight crown in front of the Bensonhurt brigade at Barclays.
Hatton's loss represents a kick in the teeth for Malignaggi, who loses out on a career-best payday, as a rematch with Hatton would have done bangup business in NYC, and Showtime would have paid a pretty penny for the right to present it.
But another New Yorker saw Hatton's comeback hopes dip into the gutter, and pondered that the Brit's loss could be his gain. Dmitriy Salita once again will campaign to get a crack at Malignaggi in intra-borough beef at Barclays.
"I just want it to be known that I want the fight with Paulie," Salita told NYFightBlog after Hatton was derailed. "I will not disappoint! I heard Paulie may want to fight in April, if that's the case I have no problem fighting Gabriel Bracero before. Now that the Hatton fight is not on hand, I want Paulie. I know that Paulie called out many of the top fighters that he fought and got the match. I am doing the same to him!"