Hoya has entered rehab in an attempt to once again combat his twin demons of
alcohol and drugs.
The 40-year old Golden Boy president, a former Olympic gold medallist and
six-weight world champion has been retired since he lost to Manny Pacquiao in
2008, and like many fighters before him, has struggled to cope with regular
life away from the ring.
enjoyed over a year of sobriety. However, there had been recent rumours
circulating online that he had fallen off the wagon.
rumours were confirmed in a dramatic statement released on Tuesday, when De La
Hoya announced that he would be unable to attend this weekend´s light
middleweight unification megafight between Floyd Mayweather and Saul Alvarez, a
fight that Golden Boy is promoting and that is on course to be the biggest
box-office hit since De La Hoya himself fought Mayweather back in 2007.
Alvarez and I have big fights coming up this weekend. His is the ring and mine
in treatment. I will not be at the fight to cheer Canelo to victory since I
have voluntarily admitted myself into a treatment facility. I explained this to
Canelo, and he understood that my health and long-term recovery from my disease
must come first. Thank you for your understanding. I ask for your support and
privacy during this difficult time for me and my family.”
has been candid about his addiction issues. In a recent interview he told Los
Angeles Times columnist Bill Dwyre that he had been attending AA meetings six
times a week, sometimes twice a day. De La Hoya said in the article:
fight life, that was easy,” “This is a battle I have every day. There
I was, the Golden Boy … and all the time, I felt like crap. … I’m a nice guy,
but I did bad things, made bad decisions. I can’t go back.”
when De La Hoya first came clean about his issues and entered a rehab facility in
2011 it was on the verge of another major Golden Boy promotion; Bernard
Hopkins’ then record-breaking victory over WBC light heavyweight champion Jean
Pascal to become the oldest fighter in boxing history to win a world title.
Hoya´s fall from grace back then had no effect on the vastly experienced
46-year old Hopkins´ historic achievement. Whether his latest episode will
prove to be a distraction for De La Hoya´s 22-year old protégé Alvarez on the
dawn of the biggest fight of his career remains to be seen.