CANASTOTA, N.Y. (AP) — Capping a career that included 10 titles in six weight divisions, an Olympic gold medal and 10 world titles, the Golden Boy found a permanent home.
Oscar De La Hoya was inducted Sunday into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.
“Today marks an incredible personal achievement,” said De La Hoya, who had an amateur record of 223-5 with 153 knockouts. “But it is only the latest milestone that never would have been possible without my family, my friends and, most of all, my fans.”
The Hall of Fame’s 25th class also included two of De La Hoya’s contemporaries in the modern era — Puerto Rican star Felix “Tito” Trinidad and Joe Calzaghe of Wales.
Also inducted were: George Chaney, Charles Ledoux and Mike O’Dowd in the old-timer category; Tom Allen in the pioneer category; and promoter Barry Hearn, referees Richard Steele and Eugene Corri, journalist Graham Houston; and Sports Illustrated photographer Neil Leifer in the non-participant and observer categories.
Inductees were selected by the Boxing Writers Association and a panel of international boxing historians.
De La Hoya won the lightweight gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. He turned pro later that year and captured his first world title, the WBO super-featherweight crown, in only his 12th bout.
De La Hoya also won titles as a lightweight, light welterweight, welterweight, light middleweight and middleweight. His 2007 bout with Floyd Mayweather Jr. was one of the richest in boxing history, attracting nearly 2.5 million pay-per-view fans. He retired after a 2008 loss to Manny Pacquiao with a professional record of 39-6 with 30 knockouts and in 2002 established Golden Boy Promotions.
De La Hoya touched on numerous topics during his speech, including the future of the sport.
“We must put aside the egos that have damaged our brand and sullied our reputation,” he said. “We, the promoters, must stop carrying petty grudges that serve no purpose but to divide our sport. And most important, we must give the fans the fights that they want.”