Top Rank Boxing Looking to Thrive in 2019 with Young Stars
From international to local athletes, from men to women, Top Rank’s 2019 has a lot of promise to it.
Since 1973, Top Rank has housed some of the top boxing talents in the world. Muhammad Ali, Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez are just a few names that come to mind. In today’s day and age, there is a lot of competitive organizations looking to secure the best young athletes out there today.
In 2019 Bob Arum’s organization is on pace to have a great year, both in and out of the ring. It is safe to say that the young and fresh talent that they have collected will be a big factor in that prediction.
While Vasyl Lomachenko (12-1) is a name to always look out for, there are other athletes out there within Top Rank that can help create a buzz.
One name to look out for is someone who just won gold this past weekend. Michael Conlan defeated Jason Cunningham to win the WBO Intercontinental Featherweight Title. At only 27, Conlan (10-0) has the potential to become a major player in the boxing world. Making his pro debut inside Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater, Conlan has now traveled from Chicago to Las Vegas. The Irish-born Conlan has been working on making a name for himself in America, similar to Conor McGregor. Going 5-0 in 2018, Conlan’s goals for 2019 are to make him an even bigger commodity.
“I’m going to be back at Madison Square Garden on March 17 for St. Patrick’s Day,” Conlan stated. “Then, we want to come back to Belfast in the summer with a fight in between. I’m not sure who is next, but I want to keep stepping up.”
With six wins via knockout and more opportunities on the horizon, Conlan can help UK boxing get a major boost in the American and worldwide market.
A recent signing by Top Rank, Eleider Alvarez may not be relatively young (age 34), but he has been taking the boxing world by storm. The current WBO Light Heavyweight World Champion, “Storm” Alvarez’s (24-0) twelve wins via knockout have made him a true favorite for boxing observers everywhere. His most recent KO came against Sergey Kovalev, who he will face in a rematch at the Ford Center in Texas in February. The pound-for-pound best light heavyweight, Alvarez’s power has a chance to bring some prominence to a division that was home to Roy Jones Jr. and Sugar Ray Leonard.
Another recent signing was 28-year-old Rob Brant, who just won the WBA Middleweight Title from Ryota Murata back in October. Top Rank’s signing of Brant might have had something to do with him throwing over 1,260 punches in his last bout. With 16 wins via KO, Brant’s (24-1) precision and power has been praised by many boxing critics. He is known for winning gold in the 2009 U.S. National and 2010 National Golden Gloves Championships.
After a brief stint in the World Boxing Super Series, where he received his first loss after going 22-0, Brant will look to prove his worth with Top Rank. In a division ran by the likes of Canelo Alvarez, Brant will do his best to separate himself from the rest of the pack.
Top Rank loves them some Olympians, as Vijender Singh won bronze in the 2008 Olympics. Singh (10-0) is 33 and has taken over the Indian boxing scene in just a short period of time. While he has been limited to England and India, Top Rank can work him like Conlan and put him on a tour of the world. A WBO Asia Pacific and WBO Oriental Super Middleweight Champion, Singh has spent time between acting and boxing. While he is a Bollywood star, it should not take away his talent in the ring. This is especially true if Top Rank has interest in him.
Fun fact: Singh beat Showtime star and two-division world champion Badou Jack in the 2009 Olympics.
Finally, women’s boxing has become a hot commodity in the past few months. Mikaela Mayer is someone who you should be paying attention to. The current NABF Super Featherweight Champion, Mayer (9-0) had a very productive 2018, going 6-0. A three-time USA Boxing National Champion, Mayer has become a true staple on ESPN’s fight cards. At 5′9″, Mayer towers over her competition, but is surprisingly very mobile.
Can Mayer surpass her fight count in 2019? What other history-making moments can she produce in the ring? If her productivity advances far beyond what fans saw in 2018, Top Rank will truly be considered geniuses.
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