DiBella reaches deal with Square Ring
Promoter Lou DiBella announced Monday that he has reached agreement with Roy Jones Jr. to co-promote the former pound-for-pound king with Jones' own company, Square Ring.
"Roy Jones Jr. is not only one of the legendary fighters of this generation, but one of the greatest boxers in the history of the game," DiBella said in a statement. "I am excited about the opportunity to promote him with Square Ring."
Jones (50-4, 38 KOs), a former four-division champion, is in talks for a July 21 HBO PPV fight with longtime rival Bernard Hopkins, against whom Jones won a vacant middleweight title in 1993. DiBella is handling the negotiations, which have stalled over a disagreement in how the revenue will be split. It's the same problem that has prevented the rematch from happening several times in the past few years.
DiBella is hopeful they will work things out this time.
"We will move forward to make the superfight against Hopkins on July 21 as long as the deal is fair to all parties and the fight is on an even playing field," he said. "I have never failed to make a fair deal with Golden Boy when we have negotiated for a fight that our fighters wanted."
DiBella and Golden Boy have dealt well with each other, co-promoting both successful Jermain Taylor-Hopkins middleweight championship fights in 2005.
Jones' pairing with DiBella is surprising because during the 1990s, when Jones was HBO's superstar and DiBella ran the network's boxing division, the two were often at odds over his contract and his opponents.
After three consecutive losses -- two by brutal knockout -- to Antonio Tarver (two losses) and Glen Johnson, Jones returned to the win column with a lopsided decision against Badi Ajamu in July.
Hopkins, meantime, easily defeated Tarver in June to win the light heavyweight world championship and then retired. But a few months later, he decided to return. He pursued a match with heavyweight titlist Oleg Maskaev, but when that went nowhere he decided to turn to his old rival Jones.
Dan Rafael covers boxing for ESPN.com.
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