El Chino has decided to call it a day. Marcos Maidana, a two-weight world champion in the world of boxing and well-known as one of the best brawlers in the sport, retired at the age of 33 after competing 40 times officially in the ring. He announced his decision on his Facebook account.
Maidana (35-5, 31 KO) started out in Argentina in 2004 and won 25 straight fights to earn a shot at the WBA super lightweight title. Andreas Kotelnik handed him his first loss (by debatable split decision) in that bout, but he persevered. His next bout saw him brought over to the US to be fodder for Victor Ortiz, who Golden Boy was grooming as a superstar in 2009. He shocked nearly everyone by trading with Ortiz and eventually stopping him in the sixth round, despite being dropped himself three times in the first two rounds. It was considered a pretty big upset at the time, and really put Maidana on the map.
Maidana looked for bouts with Amir Khan and Timothy Bradley after that, but had to wait a year and a half before Khan got in there with him. Khan dropped him early and controlled much of the fight, but Maidana turned it on late and Khan basically ran for the last three rounds. Nonetheless, Maidana suffered his second career loss by decision.
After an awesome fight with Erik Morales and another quick win, he moved up to 147 pounds. Unfortunately, Devon Alexander dominated him in his first fight there. Once again he persevered, winning three straight bouts to earn a fight with another potential superstar in the making – Adrien Broner.
Despite being a 3-1 underdog, Maidana dropped Broner twice on his way to a comfortable decision win, shattering the illusions of Broner and his supporters. This got him the money fight he had always been looking at – a date with Floyd Mayweather.
Maidana tried his best to impose his bullying style on Mayweather, and actually had more success than most. He was granted a charitable draw scorecard, but the other two judges rightly had it for Floyd. Nonetheless, his relative success against one of the best defensive fighters ever (combined with Floyd’s unusual willingness to engage when backed against the ropes) earned him another big check in a rematch. Other than one big shot at the end of the third round, the rematch was one-sided with Floyd winning again.
He hasn’t fought since then, and it’s pretty clear he’s been living the good life since those bouts. He put on a lot of weight, to the point that even he has joked about it. There was talk of a return in late 2015 and early 2016, but his statement has made it clear that he is stepping away.
You know, until a promoter in Argentina throws him a ton of cash to take a one-off fight at cruiserweight or something. This is boxing after all.
Either way, Maidana was one of my favorite fighters. His style was always fun to watch, and he had some amazing bouts. Anyone who destroys Adrien Broner has a fan in me. I have always had great respect for the tenacity that Argentine fighters like Maidana and Sergio Martinez brought to the ring, and I hope he continues to live the high life with all that Mayweather money.