By John Cannon
It’s official! The Rio Grande Valley has their first official Golden Boy Promotions fighter. Weslaco’s Omar Figueroa Jr. made it official Monday afternoon that he has chosen to sign with Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions on a five year deal.
“Finally,” said Figueroa Jr. “This is crazy that it is all happening, and I am glad we finally got it done. Now my family and I will fly to Los Angeles on Tuesday and finalized everything. I am extremely excited about signing with Golden Boy Promotions and will give them everything I have.”
Figueroa (7-0, 7 KO’s) showcased his talents in front of Oscar De La Hoya last month at the Toyota Center in Houston and was successful as he made quick work of his opponent Jeremy Marts. Figueroa ended up knocking out Marts at the 1:54 mark of the first round and it appeared that De La Hoya was interested right then and there.
“After my fight, I went to the back of the building and noticed that Oscar was at the bottom of the ramp,” said Figueroa. “He came up to me and said that he liked my fight and took pictures with me and my family.”
“After I changed clothes in the dressing room, one of Golden Boy’s representatives said that Oscar wanted me to go sit with him. We talked about a lot of things, and he told me to play it cool and prepped me for what was next.”
Omar Figueroa Sr. said that the negotiations began after that and took a little longer than he would have wanted, but he wanted what was best for his son.
“We had been talking to Golden Boy for a couple of months now and have been trying to come to an agreement before my son signed with them,” said Figueroa Sr. “At first, I was not real happy with the deal because there was not a signing bonus. But we finally got something that we liked and decided to sign with Golden Boy. I wanted to do only a three year deal, but they offered us five, and we agreed to it.”
“I am so proud of my son and everything he has accomplished. It sends chills down my spine just having he opportunity to hear that Oscar De La Hoya really wanted to sign him. It just goes to show that hard work and determination really does pay off. Omar is going to represent Weslaco as well as the entire Rio Grande Valley.”
Robert Diaz, matchmaker for Golden Boy Promotions, said that he is very happy to have Figueroa join Golden Boy Promotions and feels that he could open doors for future Valley fighters.
“Omar is the first fighter we have ever signed from the Rio Grande Valley, and hopefully he will not be our last,” said Diaz. “This is a huge step for Omar, and we feel that he has a lot of potential. I was very impressed with the way he carried himself not only inside the ring but outside the ring as well. He is very young, and the good thing is we have plenty of time to work with him and correct a few things skills wise.”
“We are flying the family up and will sign him and finalize the deal. Once he is signed, we will do whatever is necessary to keep him active and go from there.”
Figueroa Jr. said that even though he is the first person in the Valley to sign with Golden Boy, he plans to bring another first to the Valley as well.
“In two years, I plan on bringing home a world title,” said Figueroa Jr.