— NEW YORK - Oscar De La Hoya is still pondering retirement, but if his family has their way, the “Golden Boy” will be hanging up the gloves soon.
De La Hoya, in Manhattan on Tuesday to drum up interest for Saturday night's Affliction mixed martial arts event, said that his final decision could come shortly.
“My family or even my wife will say, ‘Look, you don’t have it no more. Just accept it,’” he said with the hint of a wry smile on his face. “So I really haven’t made that firm decision. I’ve been vacationing and not thinking about it, just being with the family. But hopefully soon I'll make that last decision and we'll see what happens.”
The "Golden Boy" lost via eighth-round TKO to Manny Pacquiao in his last bout last December. De La Hoya was battered by the naturally smaller southpaw for much of the fight, winning only one round on one ringside scorecard, and allowed his corner to call a halt to the action instead of going out for the ninth round.
Prior to the fight, Pacquiao's trainer — and De La Hoya's former trainer — Freddie Roach voiced an opinion that the former multi-time champion was having trouble firing off his punches. Afterward, De La Hoya agreed, telling Roach, "Freddie, you're right. I just don't have it anymore.
“There’s a lot of questions out there,” he said. “People will come up and say 'Why were you so light? Were you over-trained? Why didn't you have Floyd Mayweather, Sr. in your corner?’”
De La Hoya said that many of those around him are ready for him to call it quits, including those closest to him.
“I've been thinking about it, going back and forth,” he said. “Everybody and their mother is telling me to hang them up but I have to be certain.”
If De La Hoya (45-6) retires, it will be the end of one of the sport's most decorated and celebrated careers. He first captured the public’s imagination by winning an Olympic gold medal in 1992, and won professional titles in six different weight classes. He also has generated more money than any boxer in the sport’s history. His May 2007 fight with Floyd Mayweather holds the all-time record for pay-per-view buys with 2.4 million, and he has two of the three biggest gates in boxing history, grossing $18.4 million for his fight against Mayweather and $14.4 million for his battle against Pacquiao. De La Hoya, who turns 36 in February, has gone just 3-4 in his last seven fights dating back to 2003, however.
In recent years he has diversified his business interests, launching his Golden Boy Promotions company that quickly became one of the premiere promoters in the sport. He recently partnered with Affliction Entertainment and Donald Trump in his latest venture in mixed martial arts.
On Saturday night, De La Hoya will be promoting two events. Along with the Affliction show, his company is also behind the HBO boxing fight between Antonio Margarito and Shane Mosley. De La Hoya said he would be at the MMA show and watch boxing on TIVO.
“It’s different but at same time it’s the fight business and hopefully I can do a good job here promoting it,” he said regarding his foray into MMA. “I’m going to need some time to get to know everybody, names faces and fighter, but it's going to be fun for me and I'm looking forward to it.”