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Home » Top Rank dumped Yordenis Ugas as Manny Pacquiao had his worst year

Top Rank dumped Yordenis Ugas as Manny Pacquiao had his worst year

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An ironic twist of fate occurred for Manny Pacquiao conqueror Yordenis Ugas as the Cuban got released by Top Rank following his first loss.

In 2012, Ugas was 11-0 and enjoying a good start in the pro ranks after a stellar amateur career.

But fighting on the Diego Magdaleno vs. Fernando Beltran undercard proved his last appearance under Bob Arum.

Losing to the unheralded Johnny Garcia via a debated split decision saw Ugas dropped by the Las Vegas-based company.

The scenario transpired despite Ugas being 11-0 going into the fight and looking like he did enough to win.

It was a bitter blow to Ugas, who recalled the situation recently.

He was responding to Stephen Edwards, the @BreadmanBoxing on Twitter, who observed the progress of Edgar Berlanga.

“I watch matchmaking closely,” said Edwards. “If Top Rank cant develop you 99% of the time, you don’t ascend to championship level.

“For the exception of Ugas, I can’t think of a case. But Pavlik took a long time to develop, and he was real. If anybody can make Berlanga an elite champion, it’s them.”

Ugas responded: “I was released at 11-1. It was too hard an emotional blow for me to be despised [sic, possibly disposed of] like that.

“I had just won twelve national championships in twelve years in Cuba. I was a two-time amateur world champion and an Olympic medalist.

“It took me years to recover. But there is no grudge,” he added.


Disregarded in the first quarter of 2012, the star of Top Rank was none other than future opponent Manny Pacquiao.

However, Pacquiao’s year was about to collapse on the back of a shocking decision to Timothy Bradley a couple of months later.

Pacquiao returned in December but was subsequently knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez with a punch heard worldwide.

Chris Farina

It took Ugas nine years to make it back to the very top when he ended Pacquiao’s over twelve rounds last August.

The release was a cruel twist of fate that left Ugas’ victory even sweeter later in his tenure.

Now he gets the chance to fight Errol Spence Jr. for three versions of the welterweight title when the pair collide on April 16.

Pacquiao should have been the one opposing Spence in 2021 until an injury ruled out the latter giving Ugas the gatecrashing opportunity.

They call it the twists and turns of boxing.

WBN Editor Phil has over ten years of boxing news experience. Follow WBN on Twitter @WorldBoxingNews.