Golden Boy Adds Prospects
Golden Boy Promotions has added talent to its stable to begin the year signing undefeated WBC Interim Latino and WBA Fedecentro welterweight champion Rashidi "Speedy" Ellis (14-0, 11 KOs) of Lynn, Massachusetts and USA national boxing team member Niko "Baby Face" Valdes of Miami, Florida. It was officially announced Wednesday here is what the Golden Boy Oscar De La Hoya had to say.
"Golden Boy Promotions is kicking off the New Year by adding new, top talent to our stable with Rashidi Ellis and Niko Valdes," said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. "We are committed to developing top talent to become boxing's future champions, and will look to do just that with the addition of Ellis and Valdes to the Golden Boy family." De La Hoya added.
The undefeated "Speedy" Ellis is coming off a fourth-round TKO over Victor Gonzalez back in March 2015 in winnintg the vacant WBA Fedecentro and WBC Interim Latin welterweight titles in his home country of Puerto Rico. The 22-year-old Ellis served as a sparring partner to current Ring Magazine and WBC middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in preparation for Alvarez's showdown against Miguel Cotto. Ellis spoke on signing with Golden Boy Promotions.
"I am glad to be part of the Golden Boy Promotions team," said Rashidi Ellis. "Being part of such a great organization that prides itself on putting on the best fights in the industry really gives me confidence that they will take my career to the next level. My dream is to become a world champion and with Golden Boy at my side I know that opportunity is now a possibility," Ellis added.
The 22-year-old light heavyweight southpaw Valdes won the Florida Golden Gloves state championship four times and bronze at the National Golden Gloves. Valdes also fought in Belgium and rose to become the no. 1 ranked fighter in the country at 178 lbs. In the United States, Valdes is ranked third among amateur light heavyweights, also winning bronze at the USA Boxing National Championships in 2014. Valdes gave his take on the signing.
"It feels great," said Niko Valdes. "Since I started boxing, all I wanted was to sign with Golden Boy Promotions. The fact that the opportunity presented itself right away, right when I decided to become a professional boxer is crazy to me. They're the first real promotion that I noticed. They're very professional, clean-cut and I've always wanted to be at the Golden Boy Promotions standard of boxing," Valdes added.
Follow Miguel on Twitter @MigMaravilla