By Andrew Wroblewski
A new “Rocky” feature is in the works – but Sylvester Stallone shouldn’t be waiting for a phone call.
While it might not exactly hit the big screen, Huntington’s own “Rocky,” Chris Algieri, finalized terms for his next fight – and it’s a big one.
“Everything came to a head recently and [on Tuesday] we basically locked down a deal between all parties,” Joe DeGuardia, of Star Boxing – one of Algieri’s co-promoters – said of the Wednesday agreement that landed 30-year-old Algieri (20-0, 8 KOs) a fight with a 10-time world champion. “Chris signed off and now we’re waiting to get the final paperwork with Top Rank.”
Top Rank, which has promoted Algieri’s future opponent, Manny Pacquiao, for the last nine years, will look over the paperwork in the coming days and finalize the fight, DeGuardia said.
HBO pay-per-view will broadcast the Nov. 22 fight, to be held at the Cotai Arena at the Venetian Macao in Macau, China, according to DeGuardia.
“I look forward to a great fight,” DeGuardia said.
In his 19 year career, Pacquiao (56-5-2, 38 KOs) became the one and only professional boxer to lay claim to world championships in eight different weight classes at one time or another.
Currently, Pacquiao, 35, is the World Boxing Organization’s (WBO) welterweight champion – a title that Algieri will look to steal from him in November.
“Originally we were thinking of having Manny fight Ruslan Provodnikov, but when Chris beat him he upset the whole plan,” Bob Arum, founder and CEO of Top Rank, said. “Then we said, ‘Well, why not Algieri?’”
According to Arum, Pacquiao was impressed by Algieri when he watched the bout in June against Provodnikov that netted the Greenlawn native a WBO junior welterweight championship.
“[Algieri] knows how to fight,” Pacquiao told Arum on Monday, when his corner had a deal on the table for Algieri rumored to be at $1.5 million with an upside of PPV sales.
But, with that offer, rumors swirled that Algieri was unhappy, despite it standing as more than 10 times what he earned in June.
Then, on Tuesday, all of that changed when Algieri sat down with DeGuardia and Artie Pelullo, of Banner Promotions – the fighter’s other promoter – for a lengthy discussion.
“We were all able to sit down face to face with each other and hammer things out,” DeGuardia said of the meeting, which lasted several hours. “[Now] Chris is very happy, the purse is well into seven figures… the most significant [purse] he has ever seen.”
After defeating Provodnikov via a split decision, Algieri earned $100,000 and the WBO junior welterweight title – his first title as a professional boxer. With the fight in November, Algieri is not at risk of losing his belt, Arum said.
Last week, Algieri told Long Islander News he sought a “big-name” fight for the fall so that he could push himself into contention for fighter of the year.
“Hopefully it’ll be a big win,” Algieri said on July 7.
With the fight against an international name now in place and an opportunity to launch himself into boxing stardom, if Algieri does win, it will surely be a “big” one.