Top Rank’s latest Olympic signing makes his paid bow in the old Theater at Madision Square Garden on St Patrick’s Day of next year, and plans a further five fights at least in 2017.
Conlan relocates Stateside to Los Angeles early next year with his young family, and his promoters are adamant that he prioritises building a name Stateside before focusing on Ireland or Britain.
However, Ireland’s first and only World Amateur male gold medal winner requested his contract had a ‘fight at home once a year’ clause and Irish-Boxing.com believes one – possibly his fourth – of those six is being lined up to take place at the 9000-seater arena in Belfast in August of 2017.
Neither Conlan, Top Rank, or manager Matthew Macklin were willing to look past what promises to be a high-profile and exciting debut, but there has been talk of a big Belfast Summer show being planned and indeed the decision to hold a press conference in the Titanic City yesterday showed a desire to stay connected to the Irish fight community.
Older brother Jamie, who has a homecoming of his own on at the Titanic Convention Centre on November 5th and a WBO super flyweight World title eliminator in the pipeline, was non-committal on his brother’s Irish return, but did admit it has been mooted.
“It would be amazing to have my World title eliminator on his comeback fight in Belfast in the Odyssey Arena with Paddy [Barnes] in a big title fight and Mick in a big fight,” he said on Friday.
“It’s something I have said to Matthew [Macklin] and Matthew is on the same line. It’s something we will push to Frank [Warren]. For myself hopefully I will have this fight [November 5th] and another Commonwealth title fight just to keep us going and then have that big one.”
Former Irish, British and European champion Macklin did admit that the London 2012 bronze medalist will fight in Ireland before he completes his first year as a pro, but didn’t give date or place for any homecoming.
Speaking in Belfast the two-time World title challenger said “we are looking at a minimum of six fights in the first year and one of them will be back here in Ireland. We are not sure when that will be. He is boxing in New York on Paddy’s Day then we are looking at one the end of April and then in June on Felix Verdejo’s card on Puerto Rican Day.”
“But look it’s one fight at a time at this stage.”