June 13, 2003

Gomez Inks With SRL Boxing/Team Freedom!

Sugar Ray Leonard Boxing and Team Freedom have confirmed the signing of heavyweight contender Juan Carlos Gomez to a long term promotional agreement. Gomez will begin intensive training under legendary trainer Angelo Dundee (who trained both Sugar Ray Leonard and Muhammad Ali) in the Miami area in preparation for his HBO debut on August 16.

“I believe that Juan Carlos Gomez has a tremendous opportunity to become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, said Leonard. “His talent and drive are extraordinary. He has great speed, unmatched boxing ability and world-class power. With Angelo Dundee in his corner, he is destined for greatness. My entire organization is thrilled with this signing and believe we have a true franchise player who can do spectacular things in the heavyweight division, in boxing and in the overall world of professional sports.”

Trainer Dundee is also exciting about working with Gomez. “This young man has re-energized me,” he said. “He has all of the tools to become a truly great heavyweight.”

Born in Havana, Cuba July 26th 1973, Gomez, like many other boxing greats, began his career when a schoolyard fight drew the attention of onlookers who convinced him to take his skills to the neighborhood boxing gym. As an amateur, Gomez had a record of 257-13, defeating Wladimir Klitschko, Antonio Tarver and Ramon Garbey along the way. In 1995, Gomez defected from Cuba seeking political asylum in Germany while fighting for the Cuban National Team.

Nicknamed “The Black Panther” for his poise and tactical precision when attacking his prey, Gomez began professionally as a cruiserweight and proceeded to go undefeated, stopping almost every opponent before the final bell. In just three years, he captured the WBC cruiserweight title. He retained his belt successfully in 10 defenses and achieved a record of 32-0 before vacating his title to test his skills in the heavyweight division.

Gomez, who is currently the only undefeated top-ten heavyweight in the world, now resides in Miami with his wife (who is expecting their first child), which is why Sugar Ray Leonard Boxing and Team Freedom chose Miami as the location to officially announce Gomez’ signing.

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