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Tarkus 01-29-2008 06:23 PM

De La Hoya: 3 more 2008 fights
De La Hoya is architect of own destiny

He always wanted to be an architect, so it's fitting that Oscar De La Hoya is now carefully drafting the final blueprints that will lead to the end of his long career as a prizefighter. With precise measurements and a keen eye to all of the angles, De La Hoya says that 2008 will be it for him and that he'll punch and then get punched no more.

Some wonder why De La Hoya still continues on in what the great fight writer, Hugh McIlvanney, calls "the hardest game" yet the answer to that question rests solely in the mind of De La Hoya himself. He literally fought his way out of the barrio of East Los Angeles. Hailing from the little triangle of a city called Montebello that's wedged in between the Santa Monica, San Gabriel and Santa Ana freeways, he has become one of the most well-known and wealthiest figures in sports.

He has done it all, won it all and it would seem that, indeed, he has it all. He became the personification of the "Golden Boy" when he won an Olympic gold medal in 1992 and later garnered pieces of professional championships in six different weight classes. Along the way he faced the biggest names the sport of boxing had to offer him. From the left hooking Mexican legend Julio Cesar Chavez to Philly legend Bernard Hopkins, De La Hoya has fought the best of a generation....

Despite the fact that he added over $50 million to his already morbidly obese bank account for his fight against Mayweather last May, and despite the fact his wife, the beautifully demure Puerto Rican songstress Millie Corretjer, recently gave birth to their second child, De La Hoya says he's going to climb through the ropes three times in 2008.

Certainly he has no more to prove to the public. He's likely a first-ballot hall of fame inductee and he will go into the books as the most financially successful boxer in the history of the sport. His celebrity status and crossover appeal put him on par with fighters such as Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard. Mention the name "Oscar De La Hoya" on street corners from Bangor, Maine to London to Beijing and the people will immediately know about whom you are talking....

He has alluded to the fact that there is a void in his boxing career where he has never truly been tested in a war of attrition nor, except for the Ike Quartey fight, has he been in a good, old-fashioned, knock-down, drag-out brawl. There have been no Arturo Gatti-like comebacks in his fights. No battles with sustained ferocity where he has had to peer through blood to snatch victory from the jaws of certain defeat. When he was felled by a Hopkins bodyshot in 2005, he stayed down, which led many to question his internal fortitude. And he has never engaged in a "fight of the year" bout.

In conversations, De La Hoya has said that he would like for those types of fights to happen. 2008 will give him the final chances to make them happen.

The Golden Boy, the would-be architect, has drawn up the plans. Now it's time to cement the final blocks into place.


Oscar was better off leaving this one be IMO. Mayweather exposed his diminishing skills & De La Hoya has never shown a penchant for mixing it up for 12 rounds. I just don't see this being anything more than an ego rub tour with a muddying outcome. I lost most of my respect after the Trinidad fiasco & can't see him displaying the heart/drive/talent necessary to make this anything but a money making proposition...

themush 01-29-2008 06:38 PM

I agree Tark. There's no reason for him to do any of this. He's a HoF'er for sure and doesn't need the $$$, so what is there to gain?

Marc 01-29-2008 07:58 PM

I heard he was lobbying to get boxing off pay-per-view. I agree with this if boxing is to become a mainstream sport again. But it's unlikely to happen. And boxing is still on cable. I think we need more charismatic heavyweights, a la Ali. That's what we've been missing.

Tarkus 01-29-2008 09:15 PM

Who knows? De La Hoya's legacy may end up to be as much for helping try to re-shape the dismal boxing scene as what he did in the ring some day. I gotta hand it to the kid for his vision & for the positive influence he's already shown...

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