Sergio Martinez is generally considered the world's best middleweight, despite holding none of the major titles. He can take a major step toward proving his worth on Saturday night in his debut at Madison Square Garden.
Martinez hasn't picked the easiest of environments for the fight. He'll take on Matthew Macklin, born in England of Irish parents, on St. Patrick's Day.
The 37-year-old Argentine doesn't seem intimidated. He's got a 48-2-2 record, impressive wins in his last four fights and the incentive of his first Garden appearance. So what if it's in the Theater while the New York Rangers are busy in the main arena playing the Colorado Avalanche?
''It has been a dream my whole life to fight in the mecca of boxing, Madison Square Garden,'' Martinez said. ''I've thought about fighting here for so many years.''
What he is likely to experience, aside from fulfilling that career wish, is a hostile atmosphere. The place is almost certainly to be filled with green-clad fans rooting ...