MTK Global and D4G Promotions are delighted to announce the signing of four-weight world champion Donnie Nietes.
Filipino legend Nietes (42-1-5, 23 KOs) has had an illustrious career, having won world titles at super-flyweight, flyweight, light-flyweight and minimumweight, making him one of the most decorated boxers of the last decade.
He becomes the latest Philippines star to work alongside MTK Global and D4G Promotions following the signing of Albert Pagara last month, and Nietes is excited to soon make his long-awaited return to the ring.
He said: “I am very happy with this new step in my career. It means so much to me. Being a part of this team is brilliant and I am very grateful.
“I’m happy with what I’ve achieved so far. The journey has been wonderful and I will forever cherish how I worked hard in building my successful career. I’m not done yet and I am now hoping to get a fight with Estrada, Rungvisai and Chocolatito.
“I want to be back as soon as possible. Whether it be December or January. I am currently preparing already and I am pleased to be going back in the ring after two years. I will bring pride to MTK Global, D4G Promotions and my country Philippines.”
MTK Global Chief Strategy Officer Paul Gibson added: “We’re delighted to again be teaming up with our friends at D4G Promotions to work alongside boxing legend Donnie Nietes.
“He’s already had tremendous success in his career having won world titles in four-weight classes, and we’re confident of securing some huge fights for him in the always-entertaining super-flyweight division.”
Ahmed A. Seddiqi of D4G Promotions said: “It’s an honour to announce the signing of Donnie Nietes, and both us and MTK Global are extremely excited to be working with such a huge talent.
“There are some massive fights out there for him, and we are looking forward to seeing him showcase his skills when he makes his long-awaited return in the near future.”
News on when Nietes will have his first fight as an MTK Global and D4G Promotions fighter will be announced in due course.
Duke Ragan signs with Top Rank
Duke Ragan, the amateur fighting pride of Cincinnati, has elected to punch for pay. Ragan signed a multi-year professional pact with Top Rank, which will co-promote the 22-year-old with Antonio Leonard Promotions.
Ragan, who captured a silver medal at the 2017 World Championships in Hamburg, Germany, will make his professional debut in a four-round featherweight bout August 22 in Las Vegas on the Eleider Alvarez-Joe Smith Jr. undercard.
Ragan’s head trainer is Kay Koroma, a longtime USA Boxing coach who also works with Shakur Stevenson, Mikaela Mayer, Jarrett Hurd, Efe Ajagba, and Jared “The Real Big Baby” Anderson.
“This opportunity means the world to me,” Ragan said. “Since I didn’t go to the Olympics, becoming a world champion is my next goal. My jab, counterpunching ability, and stamina are more suited to the pro game. When I fought with headgear, I was hurting guys but not knocking them out. You’ll see more knockouts from me like a pro.”
Said Bob Arum, Top Rank chairman: “Cincinnati has produced countless great fighters, and we believe Duke Ragan will be the next world champion from the ‘Queen City.’ He is mature beyond his years, and with Kay Koroma, James Prince, and Antonio Leonard on his team, he has a wonderful support system.”
Cincinnati is the home of all-time greats Ezzard Charles, Aaron Pryor, and Freddie Miller, and Ragan grew up around the city’s recent crop of world-class fighters. His boxing mentor is Rau’Shee Warren, a former bantamweight world champion who made history as the only three-time U.S. boxing Olympian. He sparred in Cincinnati gyms with the likes of Warren, four-weight world champion Adrien Broner, Gervonta Davis, and WBO junior lightweight world champion Jamel Herring.
In addition to his silver medal at the 2017 World Championships, Ragan captured a silver medal at the 2019 Pan American Games. His amateur résumé includes victories over a plethora of future professional standouts, including Ruben Villa, Lee McGregor, Victor Morales Jr., Raymond Ford, Otha Jones III, and promotional stablemate Adam Lopez.
Despite a pair of close losses at the Olympic Trials last December, he still had a path to an Olympic berth. But with the Tokyo Olympics postponed until 2021, Ragan, who has a 3-year-old daughter, decided to get a head start on his professional career.
Said Ragan, “It’s finally my time to shine. I’m proud to be from Cincinnati, and I know bringing home a world championship will put me up there with the top dogs from my city.”