In the end, the only thing that separated the two fighters was the location of the bout - Houston, Texas. Malignaggi, from Brooklyn, New York, was booed throughout. Diaz, from Houston, could do no wrong in the eyes of his hometown fans and - as it turned out - in the eyes of the three judges. Raul Caiz scored it 115-113, David Sutherland 116-112 and Gale Van Hoy a ridiculous 118-110 - all for Diaz. In contrast, HBO's Harold Lederman had a more objective scorecard, scoring the bout 115-113 for Malignaggi.
Malignaggi predicted before the bout that he would be robbed by the judges and was particularly worried about Van Hoy and Caiz, who scored the fight between Houston's Rocky Juarez and featherweight champ Chris John a draw at the same arena back in February.
In the post-fight interviews, both men praised each other and Houston fight fans. Malignaggi, however, did not stop there. Not by a long shot. The Magic man blasted the judges ("Raul Caiz, that's Golden Boy's gopher"), the state of Texas ("This state never gives a fair shake to anybody coming to this state to fight hometown fighters") and the sport of boxing ("Boxing is full of sh*t, man. I used to love this sport, man. I can not stand doing this. The only reason I do this is because it gives me a good payday. Boxing is full of sh*t. Every f*cking fight.").
HBO announcer Bob Papa seemed to be trying to apologize to viewers for Malignaggi's language by saying "I don't think he did himself any favors by what he just did in the ring". Not necessary. It's HBO. It's boxing. Fans tune in to watch two guys try to knock each other out cold. A little cursing isn't going to offend anyone. In fact, the exact opposite was true. It was refreshing to see someone - anyone - rail against one of the recurring problems plaguing the sport. Too bad HBO doesn't use its considerable influence to help bring about change to the sport it has used for so many years to attract subscribers to its service.
Punch Stats: Total Punches: Malignaggi - 191 of 949 (20%), Diaz - 178 of 663 (27%). Power Punches: Malignaggi - 80 of 328 (24%), Diaz - 123 of 434 (28%).
On the undercard, former featherweight champ Robert Guerrero won the IBF junior lightweight title with a unanimous decision over Malcolm Klassen: 117-111, 116-113 and 116-112.
Also, top middleweight prospect Daniel Jacobs passed his toughest test yet with a ten round unanimous decision over Ishe Smith (from season one of 'The Contender'): 96-93 twice and a much too wide 100-89.