The RING reports that bantamweight star Nonito Donaire has signed a four-year deal with Top Rank brokered by company President Todd duBoef, Donaire, and Donaire's wife, Rachel.
Donaire's manager Cameron Dunkin confirmed the news:
"Nonito signed what's basically a four-year deal, so he's going to be around with Top Rank for a while," Dunkin said.
Dunkin also said that duBoef has not yet worked out a deal with either HBO or Showtime to broadcast Donaire’s next fight, but that he is in discussions with both.
"It's a good deal, I think," he said. "We haven't got a date yet for his next fight, but we're hoping to have a date today or tomorrow."
Donaire has had an odd career that should have probably made him as big a star as a flyweight/bantamweight can be by now, but has been interrupted several times by promotional issues. After knocking out Vic Darchinyan in 2007, Donaire fought just once more under promoter Gary Shaw before leaving (and not amicably) for Top Rank. Many felt his career stalled with Top Rank, as he was often "hidden" on undercards, or small, Top Rank-produced pay-per-views.
But in February, he got an exceptionally rare for his size main event slot on HBO, and blasted Fernando Montiel in two rounds. It should have, like the Darchinyan fight, been a star-making performance, but instead Donaire tried to sign with Golden Boy while still under contract to Top Rank. A mediator quickly squashed that, and harsh feelings and words spread on both sides. Now, all has been resolved, at least for the time being.
Donaire has been rumored as part of the Cotto vs Margarito card on December 3, but for now that is just a rumor. The good news is he will be back in the ring sooner than later. That's all fight fans want to see. Donaire is a special talent, and we just want to see him fight.