Oscar De La Hoya (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
Oscar De La Hoya (born February 4, 1973) is a retired American professional boxer of Mexican descent. Nicknamed "The Golden Boy," De La Hoya won a gold medal at the Barcelona Olympic Games shortly after graduating from James A. Garfield High School.
De La Hoya was born in East Los Angeles, California, and comes from a boxing family. His grandfather Vicente, father Joel Sr. and brother Joel Jr. were all boxers. De La Hoya was The Ring's "Fighter of the Year" in 1995 and Ring Magazine's top-rated Pound for Pound fighter in the world in 1997 & 1998. De La Hoya officially announced his retirement from the sport at a press conference held in Los Angeles on April 14, 2009.
De La Hoya has defeated 17 world champions and has won ten world titles in six different weight classes. He has also generated more money than any other boxer in the history of the sport, an estimated $696 million pay-per-view income.
De La Hoya founded Golden Boy Promotions, a combat sport promotional firm. He is the first American of Hispanic descent to own a national boxing promotional firm and one of the few boxers to take on promotional responsibilities while still active.
De La Hoya's amateur career included 234 wins, 163 by knockout, with only six losses. Of those six losses, one came at the hands of Shane Mosley. In 1989, he won the National Golden Gloves title in the bantamweight division. In 1990, at the age of 17, he won the U.S. National Championship at featherweight and was the youngest U.S. boxer at that year"s Goodwill Games, winning a gold medal. The joy of victory was tempered by the news that his mother, Cecilia, was terminally ill with breast cancer. She died in October 1990, expressing the hope that her son would one day become an Olympic gold medalist.
With the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, approaching, De La Hoya turned his mother"s dream into a strong focus for his training. After an upset victory in the first round over the Cuban boxer Julio Gonzalez, De La Hoya defeated Marco Rudolph of Germany to win gold. The U.S. media publicized his quest to fulfill his mother's dying wish and dubbed him with the nickname "The Golden Boy," which has remained with him throughout his career.
Super Featherweight title
On November 23, 1992, De La Hoya made his professional debut by scoring a first round TKO victory. In his twelfth professional fight, he won his first world title at age 20, stopping Jimmy Bredahl (16-0) in the tenth round to win the WBO Super Featherweight title. He defended the title once, stopping Giorgio Campanella (20-0) in three rounds.
On July 29, 1994, he knocked out Jorge Páez (53-6-4) in the second round to win the vacant WBO Lightweight title. In his first title defense, he defeated John-John Molina (36-3), who had recently vacated his IBF Super Featherweight title, by unanimous decision.
De La Hoya vs. Ruelas
On May 6, 1995, De La Hoya defeated IBF Lightweight Champion Rafael Ruelas (43-1-0) in a unification bout. De La Hoya knocked Ruelas down twice before the fight was stopped in the second round. The IBF then ordered De La Hoya to defend against Miguel Julio.
De La Hoya vs. Hernandez
He relinquished the IBF title and defended the WBO title against undefeated Genaro Hernandez (32-0-1), who relinquished the WBA Super Featherweight title to fight De La Hoya. Hernandez quit after six rounds because of a broken nose. In his sixth and final defense of the WBO lightweight title, he knocked out Jesse James Leija (30-1-2) in three rounds.
Light Welterweight title
De La Hoya vs. Chávez
On June 7, 1996, Oscar De La Hoya fought Mexican legend Julio César Chávez (96-1-1) for the Lineal & WBC Light Welterweight Championships. De la Hoya, with a record of 21-0 with 19 K.Os, defeated Chavez by a eight round TKO. The fight was stopped due to a bad cut suffered by Chavez. Until their rematch in 1998, Chávez stated that De La Hoya did not defeat him since the fight was stopped. De La Hoya successfully defended his titles with a twelve round unanimous decision against undefeated former WBC Lightweight Champion and number one light welterweight contender Miguel Ángel González (41-0-0).
De La Hoya vs. Whitaker
On March 12, 1997, De La Hoya moved up to the welterweight division and fought Pernell Whitaker (40-1-1). The fight proved to be a difficult one. De La Hoya won a disputed twelve round unanimous decision to capture the Lineal and WBC titles. He also became the Ring Magazine's number one ranked pound-for-pound fighter.
On September 13, 1997, he defeated Héctor Camacho (63-3-1) by unanimous decision. On September 8, 1998, he fought a rematch with Julio César Chávez (100-2-2) and defeated him by eighth round TKO. In his next bout, he faced undefeated former WBA Welterweight Champion Ike Quartey (34-0-1) and won by split decision. He then defeated Oba Carr (48-2-1) by eleventh round TKO.
De La Hoya vs. Trinidad
After seven defenses of his Lineal and WBC Welterweight titles, De La Hoya fought rival and IBF Champion Félix Trinidad (35-0) on September 18, 1999, in one of the biggest pay-per-view events in history, setting a record for a non-heavyweight fight. Oscar handily won the early rounds but faded down the stretch and especially in the championship rounds. De La Hoya virtually gave away the last four rounds of the fight attempting to avoid a late Trinidad rush. Trinidad was ultimately awarded a majority decision. The judges scorecards came under question after the decision. Fans and boxing analysts called for a rematch, which never happened.
De La Hoya vs. Mosley I
On February 26, 2000, De La Hoya knocked out Derrell Coley (34-1-2) to win the vacant IBA Welterweight title. The WBC awarded De La Hoya their welterweight title, which he lost, along with the IBA title, to Shane Mosley (34-0) by a split decision on 17 June 2000, given De La Hoya the first sound defeat of his pro career. The fight was a disputed decision, with one judge scoring the fight 115-113 for De La Hoya, and the other two scoring it 116-112 and 115-113 for Mosley.
De La Hoya took promoter Bob Arum to court in the fall of 2000, trying to break his contract with the promoter. The courts ruled in favor of the Golden Boy in February 2001. Tempers flared during the battle and reached a low in March 2001, when De La Hoya called Arum racist in a newspaper interview and then apologized for the remarks.
"I don't have blue eyes and I am not white, but a Mexican arriving on the cusp of fame, and that is what they do not support," De La Hoya told La Opinion in 2001. "Bob Arum's people hope I lose because they can't see a Mexican above them, and also that he defeated one of the biggest Jews to come out of Harvard."
De La Hoya vs. Gatti
De La Hoya defeated Arturo Gatti (33-4) by fifth round TKO on March 24, 2001. He then moved up to light middleweight, challenging the Spanish WBC Light Middleweight Champion Javier Castillejo. De La Hoya dominated the fight, winning almost every round and knocking Castillejo (51-4) down with ten seconds to go to win the title by a unanimous decision.
Rivalry with Vargas
De La Hoya did not fight for the 15 months and in this time the rivalry between him and WBA and IBA Light Middleweight Champion "Ferocious" Fernando Vargas (22-1) grew. They knew each other as amateurs and it is said the rivalry began when Vargas was angered by De La Hoya laughing at him after he fell into a snowbank. De La Hoya said he would never fight him. Eventually, however, De La Hoya accepted a match. The fight was scheduled for early 2002, but De La Hoya had to withdraw because of a hand injury.
De La Hoya vs. Vargas
The unification bout, labeled "Bad Blood," finally took place on September 14, 2002, at the Mandalay Bay on the Las Vegas Strip. The fight was even for the first six rounds, with Vargas landing punches on the ropes in the odd rounds, while De La Hoya outboxed him in the even rounds. De La Hoya took over the fight in the seventh round and hurt Vargas with a left hook in the tenth. In the next round, De La Hoya knocked Vargas down with a left hook and stopped him moments later. The win is widely considered to be the biggest of De La Hoya's career. Vargas tested positive for stanozolol after the fight.
De La Hoya vs. Mosley II
De La Hoya defended his unified title against Yori Boy Campas (80-5) with a sixth round knockout and then faced Shane Mosley (38-2) in a rematch. The fight, billed as "Retribution" and staged at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, was more of a boxing match than their first encounter, and many rounds were close. The fight was close and in keeping with past De La Hoya big fights, Oscar would fade late into the fight and Mosley was able to edge out a points win. Mosley was later connected to the BALCO Labs steroid scandal. Jeff Novitzky, a lead investigator on the BALCO case, reported that documents seized from the lab show that Mosley received "the clear" and "the cream," both designer steroids. Mosley reportedly began his doping regimen prior to his rematch with Oscar De La Hoya. Mosley would later admit to using performance-enhancing drugs from BALCO for this bout, saying he thought they were legal supplements.
Moving up to Middleweight
De La Hoya vs. Sturm
De la Hoya next challenged Felix Sturm (20-0) for the WBO Middleweight title on June 5, 2004. De La Hoya was awarded a unanimous decision, becoming the first boxer in history to win world titles in six different weight divisions. All three judges scored the bout 115-113 in favor of De La Hoya. The decision was controversial. Compubox counted Sturm as landing 234 of 541 punches, while counting De La Hoya as landing 188 of 792.
De La Hoya vs. Hopkins
De La Hoya fought Bernard Hopkins (44-2-1) in a unification match on September 18, 2004 in Las Vegas. Hopkins held the WBC, WBA, and IBF Middleweight titles and was considered by many to be the number one pound for pound fighter in the world. Although the fight was at a catchweight of , many thought De La Hoya was too small for the weight class and Hopkins was considered a heavy favorite.
Several days before the fight, De la Hoya's hand was cut when his hand wraps were being cut off after training. The cut required eleven stitches.
De La Hoya fought a tactical fight. After eight rounds, De La Hoya was ahead 77-75 on one scorecard. He was behind 78-74 and 79-73 on the other two scorecards. In the ninth round, Hopkins knocked out De La Hoya with a left hook to the body. It was the first time in De La Hoya's career that he was knocked out.
De la Hoya later said he couldn't get up because the pain of a well placed livershot is unbearable. Despite losing, De La Hoya made over $30 million from the fight.
Bob Arum claimed De La Hoya took a dive. It may not have mattered as it appeared Hopkins was going to win this bout one way or another. Like Mosley, Hopkins would get a job with Golden Boy Promotions.
De La Hoya responded, "So now he's going to attack me left and right. He's going to keep saying that I took a dive against Hopkins and that I'm in this only for the money. I can't stop him from saying those things. I think he's hurt. He's hurt because I chose not to stay with him until the end of my career.
De La Hoya vs. Mayorga
De La Hoya took a layoff of 20 months before signing to fight WBC Light Middleweight Champion Ricardo Mayorga (27-5-1). In the buildup to the fight, Mayorga insulted everything from De La Hoya's sexuality to his wife and child, but when they fought on May 6, 2006, De La Hoya knocked Mayorga down in the first minute of the fight with a left hook. He knocked him out in the sixth round to take his tenth world title.
The World Awaits
De La Hoya vs. Mayweather
Main article: De La Hoya-Mayweather
In early 2007, De La Hoya signed to defend his title against WBC Welterweight Champion Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (37-0-0). De La Hoya was a two to one underdog in the fight.
The fight took place on May 5, 2007. De La Hoya pressed throughout all the rounds, doing his best when he used his left jab. Mayweather controlled the later rounds and was ultimately rewarded with a split decision victory in front of a sold-out arena at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Chuck Giampi saw the fight 116-112 for Mayweather, while Jerry Roth also scored it for Mayweather at 115-113. Tom Kaczmarcek ruled for De La Hoya 115-113. The Associated Press had Mayweather winning 116-112.
Mayweather dominated the stats, connecting on 207 of his 481 total punches thrown. De La Hoya threw more punches"587"but landed only 122.
On May 3, 2008, at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California, De La Hoya fought Steve Forbes (33-5) in a tuneup for a possible rematch with Mayweather. De La Hoya showed a more relaxed style, throwing a constant jab and always staying on his toes. He opened a cut near Forbes' eye in the sixth round.
On June 6, 2008, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. announced his retirement from boxing, effectively ending talk of a rematch.
The Dream Match
De La Hoya vs. Pacquiao
Main article: The Dream Match
De La Hoya faced Manny Pacquiao (47-3-2) on December 6, 2008 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Presented by Golden Boy Promotions and Top Rank, Inc., the bout was a twelve round non-title fight at the welterweight limit. Although Manny Pacquiao went into the fight recognized as the leading pound for pound boxer in the world, some pundits speculated that 147 pounds could have been too far above his natural weight against the larger De La Hoya. However, Pacquiao's trainer Roach was confident of a victory as he stated that De La Hoya could no longer "pull the trigger" at that stage of his career. De La Hoya, who was favored to win the bout due to his size advantage, was expected to be the heavier of the two on fight night. However, though Pacquiao weighed and De La Hoya at the official weigh-in on Friday, De La Hoya entered the ring at 147 pounds to Pacquiao's .
De La Hoya took a beating and his corner stopped the fight after the eighth round. Pacquiao was ahead on all three judges' scorecards before the stoppage, with two judges scoring the fight 80-71 and the other judge scoring it at 79-72. After the bout, Pacquiao's trainer Freddie Roach stated, "We knew we had him after the first round. He had no legs, he was hesitant and he was shot." Confirming Roach's pre-fight predictions that he'd grown too old, De La Hoya crossed the ring to Pacquiao's corner after the bout was stopped and told Roach, "You're right, Freddie. I don't have it anymore." When asked by reporters whether he would continue fighting, De La Hoya responded, "My heart still wants to fight, that's for sure," De La Hoya said. "But when your physical doesn't respond, what can you do? I have to be smart and make sure I think about my future plans." During the first episode of the HBO 24/7 Pacquiao-Hatton series, Roach had said he saw IV marks on De La Hoya's arm, pointing out that he needed to be rehydrated surgically as a last resort.
De La Hoya announced his retirement on April 14, 2009, ending any speculation about a potential fight with undefeated light middleweight Julio César Chávez Jr.
Life outside the ring
De La Hoya was accused in a lawsuit of rape in 1998. The lawsuit, filed in San Bernardino (Calif.) County Superior Court, alleged that De La Hoya raped a woman, who was 15 at the time, in a hotel room in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, in June 1996. The case was settled out of court in 2001.
In 2000, he released a Grammy-nominated CD, entitled Oscar De La Hoya. Released through EMI International. The self-titled CD is a Latin pop album with 13 tracks in both English and Spanish written by Diane Warren and the Bee Gees.
On October 5, 2001, De La Hoya married Millie Corretjer. They have two children together. He also has three other children from three previous relationships.
In 2004, he debuted a clothing line of casual, and active-inspired apparel through Mervyns department stores. In the summer of 2004, De La Hoya starred in and hosted a boxing reality television series on Fox and Fox Sports Net titled The Next Great Champ.
In 2005, Golden Boy Enterprises announced the formation of Golden Boy Partners, a company focused on urban development in Latino communities.
In 2006, De La Hoya authorized a children's picture book titled Super Oscar published by Simon and Schuster and released in his name. The book was written by noted children's author Mark Shulman and illustrated by children's illustrator Lisa Kopelke. The book tells the story of young Oscar as a daydreamer, who uses his great physical ability to prepare an elaborate picnic for his entire neighborhood in just fifteen minutes. Written in English and Spanish, the book received unanimously positive reviews from the publishing review journals. Super Oscar was selected as the winner of the 2007 Latino Book Awards Best Bilingual Children's Picture Book of the year.
Around this same period, De La Hoya was featured in an early 2007 online advertising campaign by the Wall Street Journal that featured celebrity readers.
In September, 2007, De La Hoya's company Golden Boy Enterprises acquired The Ring, KO Magazine, World Boxing Magazine and Pro Wrestling Illustrated from Kappa Publishing Group.
In late 2007, photographs featuring De La Hoya cross-dressed in company of a woman not his wife were posted on a tabloid website and received extensive publicity across the internet. De la Hoya has denied the authenticity of the photos. His lawyer stated, "The photographs depicting Mr. De La Hoya's image that were posted online today by an obscure paparazzi Web site are fake. Many of the Web site's viewers (as reflected in postings on the site) identified the photos as 'a really bad photoshop job.' Unfortunately, with today's technology, anyone can make any photo seem like something other than it is." In September 2007, Mila Dravnel, the woman who sold the photographs, recanted her allegations against De La Hoya and denied the authenticity of the photographs. However, in May 2008, Dravnel sued De La Hoya for slander, but she dropped the lawsuit after experts determined the photographs had been digitally doctored. However, in De La Hoya's August 2011 interview with Univision, he confirmed that it was indeed him in the leaked 2007 photos. In a related event, model Angelica Marie Cecora also announced she would sue De La Hoya after an alleged drug-fueled romp at the Ritz-Carlton in Midtown, on March 15, 2011, where she says he went wild with drugs, booze, sex toys and cross-dressing antics.
On May 1, 2007, the Staples Center sports arena announced that a bronze statue of Oscar De La Hoya would join similar tributes to Los Angeles sports stars Magic Johnson and Wayne Gretzky at Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles. The statue was unveiled on December 2, 2008.
In February, 2008, Golden Boy acquired a 25% stake of Major League Soccer side Houston Dynamo, along with Brener International Group.
De La Hoya started a charitable foundation to help underprivileged youth to education. In 2008, he donated $3.5 million to the De La Hoya Animo Charter High School.
In June 2008, De La Hoya published his autobiography entitled "American Son".
He is a member of the 2008 United States Olympic Hall of Fame.
Oscar De La Hoya is on the front covers of the PS3, Xbox 360 and PSP versions of EASports' Fight Night Round 3.
In 2008, De La Hoya starred in a commercial alongside several Mexican boxing champions for Pronosticos lottery in Mexico. The 300 film inspired commercial featured the Mexican champions battling giants and other large creatures.
In early 2011, De La Hoya visited U.S. military personnel in Kuwait and Iraq under the auspices of the USO, holding boxing clinics and greeting the troops.
In May 2011, De La Hoya acknowledged he has a problem, but the nature of the issue was not revealed. "After doing an honest evaluation of myself, I recognize that there are certain issues that I need to work on. Like everyone, I have my flaws, and I do not want to be one of those people that is afraid to admit and address those flaws." He underwent treatment at the Betty Ford Center in Rancho Mirage, California for his alcoholism.