Three years ago he made a brief and ill-fated comeback of his own against Vyacheslav Senchenko, so perhaps former British world champion Ricky Hatton is perfectly placed to offer advice to old friend Oscar De La Hoya on the pitfalls of such a plan?
With De La Hoya seemingly still conflicted and publicly considering the idea, Hatton has spoken to Sky Sports to say that while he isn’t really surprised, he thinks De La Hoya could be potentially flirting with disaster.
“Am I surprised? Yes and no. It never really surprises me when a boxer wants to make a comeback. When a fighter had so much success – as Oscar did – the hardest thing is to let go.”
“Do I think it’s the right decision? No, I have to say I don’t. Needless to say I wish him all the very best but he’s 42. It’s just so hard to say goodbye to the sport.”
Hatton, who readily admits to struggling to cope with life after boxing, plunged into a deep depression following Manny Pacquiao’s clinical 2nd round knockout of him in 2009. Regarding his own return, he said;
“I felt I had to come back because I felt like I had let everybody down. I don’t know if Oscar (who also ended his career on a Pacquiao loss) feels the same?”
“He’s talking about going right in at the deep end with a Floyd Mayweather rematch. He’s not talking about having an easy one back. I wish him well and only he knows why he feels the need to do it.”
And Hatton had a pertinent warning should De La Hoya entertain the madness of a Gennady Golovkin fight – which has also been mooted;
“Oscar has never really been a middleweight so the idea of him fighting such a ferocious puncher as Gennady Golovkin? I can’t see it being a pleasant comeback. I hope I’m wrong because I consider him a friend and don’t want to see him get hurt.”