Top Rank announced today the signing of 2016 Olympic light welterweight gold medalist Fazliddin “Fayzi” Gaibnazarov to an exclusive long-term promotional agreement.
Gaibnazarov, shrugging off significant height and reach disadvantages, stunned skillful Cuban-born opponent Lorenzo Sotomayor to pull off the upset, winning the gold via split decision.
Gaibnazarov is the seventh 2016 Olympian to join the Top Rank stable, which includes fellow gold medal champion Robson Conceicao, silver medalist Shakur Stevenso and top amateurs Michael Conlan, Teofimo Lopez, Antonio Vargas and Jeyvier Cintron.
Managed by Egis Klimas, the Boxing Writers Association of America’s (BWAA) 2016 Manager of the Year, Gaibnazarov is expected to make his pro debut in an eight-round bout in the spring.
“Gaibnazarov is a blue chip signing who will soon be a danger to everyone in the lightweight, junior welterweight and welterweight divisions,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “We can’t wait to introduce him properly to the world as a professional.”
“I am very happy to bring to my team and to introduce to professional boxing another great prospect in 2016 Olympic gold medalist Fazliddin 'Fayzi' Gaibnazarov, from Uzbekistan,” said Klimas.
“Uzbekistan is a country where boxing is the number one sport. Unfortunately for many years it was concentrated in amateur boxing, but the times are changing and now, together with 'Fayzi' and Top Rank, we will be able to bring more professional boxing to Uzbekistan. I would like to thank Top Rank for giving an opportunity to this young, talented man and I looking forward to see him in ring making his pro debut in the near future.”
“Top Rank is the best promotional company in the world and I always want to be with the best,” said Gaibnazarov. “Thank you, Top Rank, and especially Bob Arum, for giving me this opportunity and letting me show and prove in the ring my ability to fight as a professional.
"I would like to thank my country Uzbekistan, which has an excellent amateur boxing program, and my trainer Abror, who helped me to reach one of my goals – winning Olympic gold last summer in Rio. I have many more goals as a professional and I know it will take a lot of hard work to achieve them – to become a world champion as a professional fighter. Thank you to my manager Egis Klimas, who is helping me with my professional boxer career. See you soon from the ring.”