Donaire had a stellar 2012; can he top that in 2013? (Chris Farina-Top Rank)
A person with knowledge of the situation has confirmed to TSS that Nonito Donaire (31-1, 20 KOs) and Guillermo Rigondeaux (11-0, 8 KOs) have agreed to terms in principle on a fight which would pit two of boxing’s top junior featherweight stars against each other.
Donaire, the TBRB junior featherweight champion, has long been rumored to be in negotiations with representatives of the division’s other primary main attraction, Abner Mares, though the testy relationship between the fighters’ promotional companies, Top Rank (Donaire) and Golden Boy (Mares), has recently devolved into Twitter tirades and media releases against each other from both camps.
Nonito Donaire was voted BWAA Fighter of the Year for 2012 after having gone 4-0 against former or current titleholders Wilfredo Vazquez Jr., Toshiaki Nishioka, Jeffrey Mathebula and Jorge Arce.
Meanwhile, two-time Olympic gold medalist Guillermo Rigondeaux is considered by many to be one of the most skilled fighters in the sport. Along with being ranked the number one contender for Donaire’s lineal featherweight title, Rigondeaux will also be carrying with him the alphabet title he won last January by defeating Rico Ramos. He has defended the WBA belt twice since, scoring a fifth-round knockout of Teon Kennedy in June before decisioning Robert Marroquin in September. A planned defense against Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym in Houston, which was to be the co-feature of Donaire-Arce, was cancelled days before the fight when Kratingdaenggym failed a prefight medical exam given by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.
The bout will likely take place in either New York or Los Angeles on April 13, 2013 and be televised by HBO World Championship Boxing.