By Ryan Maquiñana
This week marks the 60th anniversary of promoter Don Chargin’s first card in 1951, which took place in San Jose and featured former two-time bantamweight champ Manuel Ortiz drop a ten-round decision to local favorite Eddie Chavez.
Take an hour-long drive down Highway 101 and fast forward six decades to Friday; in TeleFutura’s Sólo Boxeo main event, NABO junior lightweight titlist Eloy “The Prince” Perez (21-0-2, 5 KOs) defends his belt for the fourth time when he faces Daniel Jimenez (20-3-1, 12 KOs) at the Salinas Sports Complex.
When asked to comment on his longtime mentor’s upcoming accomplishment, Golden Boy matchmaker Eric Gomez was unabashed in his praise for the 83-year-old Hall of Famer.
“He’s been like a father figure to me,” Gomez said. “He’s been a teacher. He’s been a friend. I’m proud of what he’s done. He’s probably the only promoter out there that’s reached that milestone. I know that King and Arum are behind him, but Don is on the brink of something historic here. I hope that he can go another 20 years.”
Chargin’s participation in the record-shattering promotion for the Floyd Mayweather-Oscar De La Hoya fight in 2007 was icing on the cake in a career marked by his “war a week” tours up and down the West Coast that mainly took place at the Los Angeles Grand Olympic Auditorium.
Still promoting but also a Golden Boy consultant on the side, Chargin’s duties with the company include working with Gomez in the matchmaking for WBC junior middleweight champ Saul “Canelo” Alvarez.
“[In terms of] something significant I’ve learned from Don, I can’t just pinpoint one,” Gomez discerned. “Everything from matching a fight, picking out styles, negotiating purses, dealing with different organizations, it’s just years and years and years of trial and error for him. I’m just blessed that he let me unlock some of his secrets. I love him for that.”
As far as the next step for Perez (a Golden Boy fighter) should he defeat Jimenez, Gomez looked at the possibility of “The Prince” fighting stablemate Adrien Broner should “The Problem” dethrone Scotland’s Ricky Burns for the WBO 130-pound title on Nov. 26.
“It would be a natural fit for both guys,” Gomez said. “Yeah, of course, we would try to make that happen next year if Broner wins.”
Ryan Maquiñana is the boxing correspondent at Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. He’s a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and The Ring’s Ratings Advisory Panel. E-mail him at [email protected], check out his blog at www.maqdown.com or follow him on Twitter: @RMaq28.