Salita Promotions has signed top super lightweight contender Michel “La Zarza Ali” Rivera to a long-term deal, adding a crown jewel to one of boxing’s most talented stables of up-and-coming fighters.

“I am excited about reaching my goal of being a world champion,” said Rivera, who’s targeting a spring return. “This is going to be a great year for me, as I look forward to continuing on the path of fighting and beating the biggest names in my division. I have a great team and a smart promoter in Salita. He understands boxing and knows what I can do inside that ring to reach my potential. I am excited to work with Salita and to fight on DAZN, where there are the biggest stars in the super lightweight division. These fights will give me the opportunity to reach championship star status, and that’s all I want.”

Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and now training out of Massachusetts, Rivera (25-1, 14 KOs) most recently competed in November, earning an impressive unanimous decision over former 140-pound world champion Sergey Lipinets. It was Rivera’s first fight at 140 pounds and followed up the only defeat of his career, a 2022 decision loss to Frank Martin.


The 25-year-old burst onto the scene in 2019, making his United States debut with a victory over Rene Tellez Giron on SHOWTIME. He continued his ascent with five more victories in 2020 and 2021, before beginning 2022 with triumphs over Joseph Adorno and Jerry Perez. Known as “La Zarza Ali” due to his uncanny resemblance to a young Muhammad Ali, he’s stood out for his own blend of speed and technical skill that he displays in the ring.


“The 140-pound division is one of the hottest in boxing, and Michel Rivera has the resume, talent, youth and personality to set it on fire,” said Dmitriy Salita, President of Salita Promotions. “I’m thrilled about his future and the championship potential he’s already displayed throughout his career.”