Lightweight amateur standout Fidel Maldonado Jr. has signed an exclusive promotional contract with TKO Boxing Promotions, it was announced today by Chet Koerner, its President.
Based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the 18 year old Maldonado Jr., finished his stellar amateur career with a record of 118-12 and was ranked #2 in the United States last year, winning the 2008 U.S. Future Stars National Championships.
The southpaw has been amongst the top amateurs in the boxing rich state of New Mexico for the last few years.
Said Chris Middendorf, CEO and Director of Boxing Operations for TKO Boxing Promotions; “Our Hometown Heroes program is about identifying top young talent, going to their home towns and working with their teams to develop them as fighters, as individuals and, ideally, as future world champions.
"Fidel Maldonado Jr. has all the positive characteristics to become one of our Hometown Heroes. We are negotiating right now with sites and are very excited about going to Albuquerque, with such a rich history of boxing, and promoting his pro debut.”
“There are a lot of naysayers in our sport who are decrying the sad state of the game. What we are finding is that there is an unbelievable wealth of world class talent out there. If brought along and promoted correctly, these young fighters can and will build huge new fan bases across the country.
"They are the true future of the sport. Fidel Maldonado is just one of a very exciting group of young fighters who we will build under the banner of TKO Boxing.”
Fighting out of the Atrisco Boxing Club in Albuquerque, Maldonado Jr. has spent the last two years competing at the highest level of amateur competition including the National Golden Gloves, National P.A.L. Boxing Championships, National Golden Glove Tournament of Champions and the National Silver Gloves.
In the 2008 U.S. Future Stars National Championships Semi-Final Round, Maldonado showed courage and valor belying his youth.
Battling Shemuel Pagan of Brooklyn, New York in a highly entertaining, back and forth bout, Maldonado earned the last three points of the fourth round to earn a dramatic 16-15 win. The first three rounds were evenly scored.
The memorable bout had the huge crowd at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on their feet throughout the match.
Maldonado Jr. will be guided in the professional ranks by award winning manager Cameron Dunkin who counts world champions Kelly Pavlik, Nonito Donaire and Steven Luevano along with sensational Russian middleweight prospect Matvey Korobov amongst his stable of outstanding fighters.
Said Dunkin, “Fidel has all the attributes necessary to become a world champion. He’s got an exciting fan friendly style that has made him very popular in the Albuquerque area.”