Michael Conlan signs with Top Rank
It seems as though amateur standout Michael Conlan did have the last laugh.
Conlan signed a multi-year contract with Top Rank, the Las Vegas-based promotional company announced Monday afternoon.
The signing comes about a month after Conlan was eliminated from the 2016 Olympic tournament in the quarterfinals at the hands of Vladimir Nikitin of Russia.
Entering the tournament as the No. 1 seed in the bantamweight division, it was Conlan’s reaction after the decision was announced that brought him notoriety. After the scores were announced, Conlan gave the middle finger with both hands to the judges and AIBA officials at ringside.
On that same day, Conlan sent a message through Twitter to Russian president Vladimir Putin that said, “Hey Vlad @PutinRF_Eng How much did they charge you for?”
The outburst towards AIBA officials almost certainly guaranteed the 24-year-old Conlan was not going to continue with his amateur career.
Conlan, who is the younger brother of unbeaten Jamie Conlan, is now in good hands as Top Rank has an excellent reputation for developing prospects into contenders and eventually into world titleholders.
Conlan, who is managed by former middleweight contender Matthew Macklin, won a bronze medal at the London Games in 2012 and gold medals at the 2015 European Championships and the World Amateur Championships. He is considered to be the best amateur fighter in the history of Ireland.
Conlan will likely make his pro debut early next year.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper, Boxingscene.com, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing.