Oscar De La Hoya: Not to Late For the Perfect Ending By Eric Marks, Doghouse Boxing (Jan 21, 2010) DoghouseBoxing
With Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. now the kings of boxing you may have forgotten that shining star that faded off into the sunset about nine months ago: Oscar De La Hoya. He has of course been busy with his promotional company and numerous other endeavors that he must be involved with. And all indications seem to suggest that he is, by and large, content with retirement from the ring (to the extent to which a fighter can be).
As a De La Hoya fan for many years, I was, like many, somewhat surprised at the way Manny Pacquiao manhandled him in December 2009 ultimately sending him into retirement. Similarly, it was hard to gauge whether retirement was the appropriate course of action, given De La Hoya hadn’t, for all intents and purposes, showed any major signs of deterioration up to that point and fought Pacquiao outside his most comfortable fighting weight. Of course the rest is history and De La Hoya did retire in April 2009 without the grandiose ending he sought. I for one had hoped he would have taken a farewell fight, but respected his decision.
In the months since then, I’ve postulated from time to time about a possible scenario that would make sense for De La Hoya to come out of retirement for one final fight in an effort to go out on top like he imagined. And this is why I write this today, because part of the scenario I envisioned, has come true.
Despite any decline of De la Hoya, I felt if he could get the right opponent at junior middleweight he could prevail and go out his way. In the two months since Manny Pacquiao knocked out Miguel Cotto, it only seemed natural that Cotto would move up to junior-middleweight. Recently, we have heard that it is likely Cotto will face junior-middleweight titlest Yuri Foreman in June. This is what I predicted and De La Hoya should challenge the winner of that fight at the end of this year.
Cotto provides name recognition and has shown chin and conditioning problems. Not too mention it’s unclear how he will recover from the loss to Pacquiao and the move up to 154 making this a good stylistic match-up for De La Hoya. In Foreman, you have a guy who is largely unknown but who would substantially raise his stock by beating Cotto. And the fact that he is an Israeli fighter gives him a broad appeal. His lack of knock out power and big fight experience would probably lead De La Hoya to believe that he could handle him.
De La Hoya would have a chance to retire as champion after a two year layoff. He could prove to himself that he has gas left in the tank, and at the very least get that sour taste of the Pacquiao fight out of his mouth. De La Hoya has been gone a little while, but not so long that a return is not warranted, and not much longer than some of the extended layoffs he has had at various points in his career. I see this as a perfect opportunity for Oscar to seize and have the ending he has sought. Hopefully, he answers the call.