WSB light flyweight champion Paddy Barnes has elected against defending his title in the next installment of the pro-style amateur competition.
The two time Olympic bronze medal winner and Rio gold hopeful earned Olympic 2016 qualification via the tournament last year thanks to a flawless 7-0 record.
The popular Belfast star boxed for the Italia Thunder last season and the season before, but only appeared once for the Italian franchise the term previous.
The WSB claim Barnes is available for the December 1st draft in the 49kg category, but Barnes told Irish-boxing.com he won’t be entering next year.
It seems that, pre-draft, all teams in the competition bar the USA have already confirmed they won’t be drafting in boxers from other countries in the light flyweight class, and Barnes isn’t sure if he would be certain of ring time if he were to fight for the American franchise, despite the fact he has proven he is the best at the weight.
“I am out of the WSB,” said Barnes. “No teams are looking for 49kg boxers as they are using their own national boxers. Only the USA could get me and that wouldn’t necessarily mean I would get a fight. Plus the money is terrible for it. The WSB was set up for boxers to earn a living, which isn’t possible for $2000 a win.”
Barnes has previously stated a willingness to turn pro if the right offer came in, indeed he has stated he would turn pro in the morning if he was guaranteed security for his young family. This latest development might increase his chances of changing code although most would argue he would be best served entering pro talks with a gold medal as a bargaining chip.