On Tuesday, September 28, I was able to attend the press conference for Golden Boy Promotions and the Barclays Center at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, New York. Oscar De La Hoya announced at the conference that his Golden Boy Promotions will promote 12 boxing cards annually over the next three years at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. It had been announced that a clinic run by De La Hoya for teenage boxers was to immediately follow the press conference, but the term “clinic” was a stretch to say the least. While De La Hoya expressed concern for young amateur boxers and a desire to encourage them now so they can progress to world class professional competition if they dream to do so, the event was more of a photo opportunity publicizing future fight promotions, which will include Brooklyn native and former Junior Welterweight Champion Paulie Malignaggi, who is now under contract with Golden Boy.
The young boxers got pictures with De La Hoya, Malignaggi and other fighters present, as well as autographs, and after the general public was subdued from mobbing De La Hoya he was ushered into one of the Gleason’s rings to work with the boxers. The ring apron was surrounded by TV and print cameras as De La Hoya, still in his casual dress clothes, gave some shadowboxing instruction to the young amateur boxers. I didn’t look at the clock to see how much time elapsed, but to say De La Hoya spent more than a half hour to 45 minutes conducting the so-called “clinic” would be a stretch. Then he slowly made his way through the mobbing crowd to the door, stopping at the speedbag to pose for a picture with a young boxer before leaving.
The attention De La Hoya paid to the youth of Gleason’s Gym is admirable, even if it wasn’t an extensive clinic as the language of the press release suggested. Perhaps, as the schedule of future fights promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in Brooklyn unfolds, De La Hoya will one day find the time to close off the gym and conduct an extensive clinic wherein he dons some workout clothes and gets a little sweaty with the kids. Such an event will have to be conducted more privately, though, because De La Hoya is obviously too popular to avoid such swarming crowds of autograph seeking admirers.
© Copyright 2010, Mark Connor