Strengthening its objective to make Western Mass. its power base, Granite Chin Promotions (GCP) has announced the signing of a pair of promising prospects from Springfield, super featherweight Isaiah “Baby Warrior” Cruz (5-0, 3 KOs) and super lightweight Ian “Dinamite” Garcia (2-0-1, 1 KO).
Granite Chin’s stable already includes several Western Mass. boxers including Massachusetts Welterweight Champion Denzel “Double Impact” Whitley (10-0, 6 KOs), of Holyoke; Massachusetts Light Heavyweight Champion Steve Sumpter (7-0, 6 KOs), of Pittsfield, and his brother, heavyweight Quintin Sumpter (5-1, 4 KOs); and undefeated junior middleweight prospect Carlos Castillo (6-0. 4 KOs).
“I’m thrilled to be part of Isaiah’s and Ian’s career,” GCP President Chris Traietti said. “Both guys have a ton of talent and are genuinely good guys. It is always humbling when young fighters trust you to help guide their careers. I take that responsibility seriously and won’t let them down, or any of my fighters for that matter down. There are a ton of quality fighters out in Springfield, but nobody has taken the time to try to build a home for boxing there. I intend to change that. I mean it, sincerely, within 2 years Springfield is going to be the spot for the best shows in New England and Granite Chin will be the one running them.”
Cruz, 20, had 90 amateur bouts and competed in numerous national tournaments. He was rated as high as No. 6 in the country. He is friends with Castillo and also knows Whitley and the Sumpter brothers.
“We’ve always had talent here,” Cruz noted, “but we didn’t have the connections – promoters and managers – to get noticed and fight our way out of here. This is a great opportunity for me (to sign with (GCP). I had a few opportunities, but this was the best. I signed with Granite Chin because Chris (Traietti) is not going to rush my career. We’re going to take it step-by-step. I’ll also get a belt in my second year and I’m going to be fighting at home.
“I can’t wait to fight again in Springfield on March 11th (at MassMutual in Springfield). There’s a lot of talent on this show and our fans will be hyped up. Granite Chin will succeed in promoting shows in Springfield. We all have a lot of fans here.”
The 24-year-old Garcia is a native of Puerto Rico, who moved to Springfield in 2000. During the pandemic, Garcia traveled to Tijuana to make his pro debut, which resulted in a 4-round majority draw on the road against a local opponent.
“I agree that there is a lot of talent in Western Mass.,” Garcia noted, “but we had no outlet to show our skills. And there are a lot of young kids coming up, too, who will be able to get to the next level of boxing. They will get better because of shows held in Springfield. There are a lot of hungry kids here, especially me.
“I signed with Granite Chin because Chris is going to be a great help for me. My fans want to see me fight, and now they can because Granite Chin is promoting shows here.”
Cruz and Garcia were both winners on Granite Show’s inaugural show in Springfield this past November 19th at MassMutual.
The upbeat continues as Granite Chin Promotions clearly invests in Western Mass.