ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- Greg Haugen and Vinny Pazienza have boxed 30 rounds against each other, split two decisions and took turns winning the International Boxing Federation lightweight championship.
After Haugen regained the title Saturday with a unanimous 15-round decision, both fighters said Haugen-Pazienza III would be a good idea.
'I'd be happy to oblige him for a rematch,' Haugen said after beating Pazienza's face a bloody mess. 'Me and Vinny went 30 hard rounds and anyone who says they didn't get their money's worth is full of it.'
Pazienza said he would like to fight Haugen again.
'People wanted to see this fight and after a slugfest like this they'll want to see another,' he said. 'You'll have to ask Greg, he's champion now.
'It just wasn't my night, he had my number.'
Haugen, 27, avenged a 15-round decision loss to Pazienza, 25, June 7 in Providence, R.I. Haugen labeled that a hometown decision and left no question in the rematch.
He bloodied Pazienza's nose in the third round, opened a 10-inch gash on his left eye in the ninth and pounded him with jabs and hooks the entire 15 rounds. Pazienza said his nose was not broken Saturday, as it had been before and during the first Haugen fight.
There were no knockdowns and Pazienza fought back until the end. The judges favored Haugen by scores of 147-138, 147-138 and 145-140.
Haugen, of Las Vegas, Nev., improved to 21-1-1 and won the title he first captured from Jimmy Paul 14 months ago. Pazienza fell to 23-1.
The major obstacle to a rematch in the near future is Pazienza's weight. Although he made the division limit of 135 Friday night, he was eight pounds over four days before the bout. Pazienza's promoter Dan Duva said any rematch might have to be in the junior welterweight division.
'I can't see how he can stay at 135,' Duva said. 'It's always a struggle for Vinny but this was really bad.'
Pazienza, however, said he would try to make weight to fight Haugen a third time.
Haugen and Pazienza do not like each other and made that known in comments before both bouts. After Satuday's fight, however, they praised each other as tough, hard-nosed boxers.
'I felt there was a lot more respect between the two of us,' Haugen said. 'There's a lot of animosity. We're two different kinds of guys, raised two different ways.'
Said Pazienza: 'There's a lot of admiration after you go 15 rounds. A lot of things were said, maybe there'll be a third fight and more things will be said.'
Haugen was slightly critical of his opponent at the postfight press conference.
'One thing Vinny can do better,' he said. 'He drops his right hand when I jab, he should keep his right up.'
'Thanks, Greg,' Pazienza said. 'You can coach me for the rematch.'