Kenny Bayless, regarded by many as the best boxing referee in the world, was appointed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Thursday to officiate the rematch between pound-for-pound king and unified welterweight world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. and former titleholder Marcos Maidana.
Mayweather (46-0, 26 KOs), 37, of Las Vegas, and Maidana (35-4, 31 KOs), 31, of Argentina will fight again on Sept. 13 (Showtime PPV) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in a sequel to their exciting unification bout on May 3, which Mayweather won by majority decision in perhaps the most difficult fight of his brilliant unbeaten career.
Bayless, of Las Vegas, will be refereeing his fifth Mayweather fight, including the biggest bouts of his career. Given Bayless' stature in the sport, he was also assigned to work Mayweather's victories against Oscar De La Hoya in 2007 and Canelo Alvarez in 2013, the two biggest pay-per-view fights in boxing history -- the only ones to surpass two million buys.
Bayless also worked Mayweather's 2010 fight against Shane Mosley and his 1996 professional debut, a second-round knockout of Roberto Apodaca.
Bayless will be officiating his second Maidana fight. He was also the third man in the ring for Maidana's eighth-round knockout victory against Jesus Soto Karass in September 2012 at the MGM Grand.
The judges assigned to Mayweather-Maidana II were Dave Moretti of Las Vegas, John McKaie of New York and Guido Cavalleri of Italy.
Moretti also judged the first Mayweather-Maidana fight, scoring the bout 116-112 in favor of Mayweather. That was Moretti's first Maidana bout, but he has judged eight previous Mayweather fights: Maidana I, Alvarez, Miguel Cotto, Mosley, Juan Manuel Marquez, Ricky Hatton, Zab Judah and Arturo Gatti. McKaie and Cavalleri will be working their first Mayweather and Maidana bouts.
The Nevada commission also appointed the officials for the other two world title bouts that will take place on the Mayweather-Maidana II undercard. For the co-feature between junior featherweight titlist Leo Santa Cruz (27-0-1, 15 KOs) and Manuel Roman (17-2-3, 6 KOs), Robert Byrd of Las Vegas will serve as the referee. Judges assigned were Burt Clements of Nevada, Cathy Leonard of North Carolina and Max De Luca of California.
Las Vegas' Tony Weeks will referee the fight between lightweight titlist Miguel Vazquez (34-3, 13 KOs) and Mickey Bey (20-1-1, 10 KOs). Las Vegas judges Adalaide Byrd and Robert Hoyle and Julie Lederman of New York will score that fight.