Lo Greco will make his debut for Golden Boy on April 28th (Photo courtesy of Team Lo Greco).
Editorial by John Archibald
Undefeated Welterweight Inks Promotional Deal with Golden Boy Boxing
I had the pleasure of recently catching up with undefeated welterweight Phil Lo Greco (22-0, 12 KOs), who just inked a deal with Golden Boy Promotions that will bring the internationally renowned world title contender to the United States. A slick craftsman of Italian and Canadian heritage, Lo Greco is the current WBC International Champion and looks to open the next chapter of his highly successful career when he makes his promotional debut for Golden Boy on the April 28th undercard of Bernard Hopkins vs. Chad Dawson in Atlantic City.
“My promoter in Italy, OPI 2000, has a connection with Golden Boy, and they know I can be a more valuable boxer on that side of the world than Europe for now,” Lo Greco said of the signing. “I’m Italian and Canadian, as well as being bilingual, and I’ve been all over internationally. The time is now right to be in the U.S. market and try to make a name for myself.”
Lo Greco says he has been eyeing a move to the United States for the past few years, and he restructured the group around him to make sure the transition would be a successful one when it came to fruition.
“This was something that took time, obviously,” he commented about the new path of his career. “I always like to surround myself with a winning team. I said if I was ever going to sign with a promoter in the States, it would have to be the best. I set a goal, and I reinvented my team from coaching, managing, promotion – everything, which is why I was inactive for a year. I said the next time I went into the ring, I wanted to do it with a big bang. It’s been a big accomplishment so far, and now I just want to prove that I can compete with the best at 147.”
With family in the borough and good friends who are well known on the Brooklyn boxing scene such as former IBF Junior Welterweight Champion Paulie Malignaggi and Dr. Pietro Baio, Lo Greco has been establishing himself within that community quite well over the past few years. The Toronto born fighter says that familiarity along with the opening of the Barclays Center in Brooklyn later this year are key reasons why he felt Golden Boy was the right place for him.
“I have a lot of friends already in New Jersey, New York and Brooklyn, and I also have family members there,” he remarked. “I’ve been wanting to make this move for the last three years, and it just never worked out. Good things come and go, but great things come in time. And that great thing just happened in my career. I’m definitely looking forward to fighting on the East Coast, and I think American fans are the best fans.”
With Canada and Italy already on his back, Lo Greco says he would be proud to add Brooklyn to that list of his supporters. However, he admits that gaining that type of international notoriety has not been easy to accomplish.
“When I was traveling, people thought I was just a globe trotter,” he recollected. “I set myself up to have this type of support. When I was an amateur, I decided to leave the national team in Canada when I turned pro because I wanted to market myself in Europe. I did that, and now I feel I am ready to make it happen here. You have to be ready because Golden Boy is the next level. Now I feel ready to be on that stage, and it definitely feels good. Hard work pays off, but I still have a lot to prove.”
While not overlooking his proposed debut under Golden Boy on April 28th (an opponent has not been named yet), Lo Greco did briefly share with me what he anticipates going forward in his career.
“I am expecting big things for myself,” he remarked. “I want to thrill the fans with my fights. I’m not there to duck anyone, I just want to fight. Hopefully, later this year at the Barclays Center, we can start lining up some big fights.”
A couple of things I quickly learned about Lo Greco throughout this interview are that he is a highly respectful, humble and motivated fighter. He made sure to thank me for hooking up with him for this feature, and he finished our conversation with some high regards for American fight fans.
“I have a lot of fans who are supporting me in America,” he stated. “There’s fans, and then there’s FANS, and American fans are the best fans. I will give the fans the treatment they deserve.”
For more information on Phil Lo Greco, visit his official website at www.PhilLoGreco.com or follow him on Twitter @Phil_Lo_Greco.