Upon welcoming his close pal Paddy Barnes to the pro circuit, Carl Frampton backed the two time Olympian would win a World title, but joked he hopes he only achieves World champion status at one weight.
It’s typical fair between two close friends with a competitive edge. However, it seems Barnes has eyes on equaling or even eclipsing – depending what weight ‘The Jackal’ ends up at – the achievements of Ireland’s second ever two weight World champion.
The Belfast double Olympic bronze medalist has signed a managerial deal with Macklin’s Gym Marbella and the 29 year old plans to begin his professional career in the near future as he aims to move quickly through the ranks – and weights.
Barnes, who looks set to debut on a Jamie Conlan-topped Titanic Exhibition Centre-hosted bill on November 5th, will begin his career at flyweight and believes he could end up as a bantamweight.
“My debut will possibly be before Christmas in Belfast. It’s my home city so it would be great to begin my career there,” Barnes told the Ray D’arcy Show on RTÉ Radio 1.
“I’m going to start off at a flyweight, hopefully move through the weights, and probably end up bantamweight at the end of my career.”
With two Olympic medals in his pocket, a host of WSB experience, and a massive profile to go with it, it was expected that Barnes would have a host of offers to filter through.
However, the popular Belfast puncher revealed he only had one serious offer on the table and it came from Macklin’s Gym Marbella, who also look after the likes of Jamie Conlan, Mick Conlan, Tyrone McKenna, Stephen Ormond, Sean Turner, Phil Sutcliffe Jr, and Jono Carroll.
“There were a few ones talking. They were asking me to go an sign with them,” he added.
“They weren’t offering me much, they weren’t really explaining to me much. MGM were the only ones who have actually offered me something and explained to me the path that they want me to go on.”
“It was only natural and obvious that I was going to go with someone who was going to offer me something.”