By Rick Reeno
BoxingScene.com has been advised that a Circuit Court hearing was held this morning in Miami and the court enjoined WBA super bantamweight champion Guillermo "El Chacal" Rigondeaux (10-0, 8 KOs) from engaging in any bout not approved by his manager, Gary Hyde, and also enjoined Rigondeaux from participating in a September 15th defense against Roberto Marroquin (22-1, 15 KOs) on the undercard of the Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.-Sergio Martinez HBO Pay-Per-View, taking place at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
As BoxingScene reported several days ago, two separate lawsuits were been filed in connection to the Rigondeaux vs. Marroquin bout. Both cases were filed last week in the Miami-Dade County courthouse in Florida.
In relation to Hyde's action, the papers were filed by Miami based attorney William J. Brown. Hyde sought to enforce his managerial contract with Rigondeaux. Top Rank was not a party to Hyde's action
Hyde's personal attorney, Patrick English, advised BoxingScene that his client's contract with Rigondeaux grants him the authority to approve and/or reject the Cuban fighter's opponents. Hyde alleges that Rigondeaux refused to communicate on the matter and went around his back to make a deal with Top Rank for the bout with Marroquin.
"Mr. Hyde has a contract with Mr. Rigondeaux. Things were going very smoothly under that contract. Mr. Rigondeaux gave Mr. Hyde the instructions to basically get him the best deals, best offers. It appears Top Rank attempted to go around Mr. Hyde because it wasn't prepared to give the best offer. Somehow they got Mr. Rigondeaux sequestered and therefore Mr. Hyde was obliged to go to court to enforce his management agreement, which he did," English told BoxingScene.com.
"The contract provides that Mr. Hyde has the right and obligation to negotiate and approve all fights and boxing agreements for Mr. Rigondeaux. Top Rank acted inappropriately in attempting to go around Mr. Hyde when they knew there were better deals out there."
David Marroso, a senior attorney with the Los Angeles-based O'Melveny and Myers law firm, represents the interests of Top Rank in the second action. As the promotional company is not directly involved in this particular case with Hyde, he had no comment on the matter.
The second lawsuit was filed by Black, Srebnick, Kornspan & Stumpf on behalf of Boris Arencibia, owner of Caribe Promotions, against Rigondeaux and Top Rank.
Arencibia's case is being handled by Jared Lopez, a partner in Black, Srebnick, Kornspan & Stumpf.
Lopez advised BoxingScene that his client sued Rigondeaux for breach of contract, claiming the boxer is still bound to an existing agreement that makes Caribe Promotions the "exclusive worldwide promoter for Rigodeaux's fights," and that Rigondeaux went forward with a planned fight against Marroquin without their involvement. There is a claim of tortious interference against Top Rank because they allegedly signed Rigondeaux-Marroquin without the involvement of Caribe.
Top Rank signed Rigondeaux in 2010 to a two-year agreement. Caribe was involved in that deal as a co-promoter and receives monetary compensation in connection to Rigondeaux's fights. Caribe is claiming the agreement between Top Rank and Rigondeaux expired in July of 2012 and no extension had ever been agreed upon between the three parties. Caribe is making the claim for interference because they believe their company is the sole promoter of Rigondeaux because Top Rank's deal allegedly expired.
A source with knowledge of the contracts disagrees with Caribe's position, advising BoxingScene that Top Rank's agreement with Rigondeaux has not expired. The contract was indeed a two-year term, but the agreement was reportedly initiated by the date of Rigondeaux's first fight under the Top Rank banner - and not the July date when Rigondeaux signed the actual agreement. Rigondeaux's first fight under the Top Rank banner took place on either August 21 or November 13 in 2010 - but either way if those facts are correct then the interference claim would be fully ruled out.
Furthermore, based on the contract agreement between the three parties, Top Rank was made the lead promoter and they, along with Rigondeaux, were the only decision makers when it came to the opponents, fight dates, promotion, etc.
In connection to the lawsuit brought on by Caribe, Maroso told BoxingScene the following:
"Top Rank just learned of the lawsuit filed by Caribe. We're looking into the allegations. At this point we believe they lack merit and we will defend Top Rank to the fullest extent permitted by law."