Banner Promotions President Art Pelullo said, “I understand that Sergio Martinez is going to be fighting Darren Barker on October 1. I have known Lou DiBella, Martinez’ promoter, for over 20 years and we are personal friends. I have been in the fight business for over 25 years and I know how the business works.
“The Martinez camp never spoke to me about Dmitry Pirog. Clearly, they have no interest in the fight because it is a very dangerous fight for Martinez.
“I have been trying to make the Martinez fight for over nine months. I have talked to Lou, I have talked to Kery Davis, and I sent several emails to Ross Greenburg and Kery Davis about the fight.
“Dmitry is one of the top three middleweights in the world and had a spectacular knockout victory over Danny Jacobs last July to win the WBO middleweight world title. It seems like he’s being punished for winning.
“I have consistently told HBO over the last 11 months that Dmitry is ready, willing and able right now to fight anybody – incuding Sergio Martinez. We are quite sincere. Dmitry wants to come to America and fight the best fighters in the world.”