By Jake Donovan
It appears as if things are back to normal in the career of Jonathan Oquendo, who in the end will return to his natural weight class as well as his original promoter.
The resurgent contender from Puerto Rico has been caught in a tug-of-war between the two promotional entities that have guided his veteran career at separate points, Puerto Rico Best Boxing Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions. Mere days following his upset win over former two-division champ Jhonny Gonzalez, Oquendo was announced as having re-inked with Golden Boy Promotions.
The news put at risk a planned December 5 showdown with secondary featherweight titlist Jesus Cuellar, a deal that was negotiated through Puerto Rico Best Boxing Promotions, who threatened to settle Oquendo's promotional status in court.
It appears as if the threat of a lawsuit was enough to convince all parties to reexamine the matter, and for the boxer to proceed with his career as per the terms of his existing promotional contract.
As for Golden Boy no longer being involved with Oquendo, there are no hard feelings over the misunderstanding. The California-based promotional firm was eager to renew its relationship with the resurgent featherweight, but understandably cannot move forward in light of recent developments.
"While it's unfortunate that Jonathan misunderstood his prior obligations, all of us at Golden Boy wish him the best of luck in his upcoming title fight," noted Golden Boy spokesman Stefan Friedman.
The clash between Oquendo (26-4, 16 KOs) and the Argentine Cuellar (27-1, 21 KOs) will be part of the show headlined by the WBA middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs (30-1, 27 KOs) and former middleweight world champion Peter Quillin (32-0-1, 23 KOs), who are going to face for Jacobs' belt. Both Quillin and Jacobs live in Brooklyn.
"After reviewing my promotional contract as a professional boxer with Ivan Rivera (President of PRBBP), I realized that it is in effect until 2016, so I can't sign with another company," Oquendo (26-4, 16KOs) noted. "Also, I noticed that my management contract had expired in July 2013 and I hadn't noticed.
"I signed the contract with Golden Boy Promotions per misstatement of the people who were managing my career, and with whom I communicated via phone and email, so I did with the people of Golden Boy Promotions too, to end the relationship."
It was good enough for the brass at Puerto Rico Best Boxing Promotions to move forward sans grudge. With that comes the first opportunity to fight for a major title as well as his first career fight in New York, which boasts the largest population of Puerto Ricans living in the United States.
"We were offered this fight for Jonathan after his great win against Jhonny Gonzalez and we spoke with his team, everything was good so Jonathan will face Cuellar for the world title," states Peter Rivera, vice president of PRBBP. "Jonathan took some days off after his fight against Gonzalez, but he is already training to be in the best condition, as usually he goes for his fights.
"Jonathan will also have the opportunity to fight in front of thousands of Puerto Ricans, who will supporting him in Brooklyn that day and cheering for another Puerto Rican to become world champion."
Cuellar (27-1, 21KOs) will attempt the fifth defense of his secondary title. His last win came in August, stopping faded former two-division champ Vic Darchinyan in eight rounds this past August.
Jake Donovan is the managing editor of BoxingScene.com.
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