by David P. Greisman
Egor Mekhontsev, a Russian boxer who captured gold at light heavyweight in the 2012 Olympics, will be signing with Top Rank.
“Everything’s agreed to,” Top Rank’s Bob Arum told BoxingScene.com in an interview on Oct. 4. He called Mekhontsev a “sensational fighter,” as well as “a great puncher and a great-looking kid.”
Mekhontsev, who turns 29 in November, won the 2009 world championships fighting as a heavyweight (91 kilograms), then picked up bronze as a light heavyweight in the 2011 world championships, according to AIBA, which governs amateur boxing. Last year in London, he edged Adilbek Niyazymbetov in the Olympic finals via a tiebreaker.
Arum says Mekhontsev will be promoted in the United States, though he was not yet certain how his career path would be plotted.
“It’s not like [Vasyl] Lomachenko, who’s really special,” Arum said. “It’s not like Zou Shiming, who we’ll bring along quickly. We’ll have to see how quick we bring along this kid.”
Mekhontsev is just the latest Olympic gold medalist signed by the promoter: Shiming won at light flyweight while representing China, Lomachenko won at lightweight while representing Ukraine, Ryota Murata won at middleweight while representing Japan.