Cuban 2020 Olympic Gold Medal Winners Dominate In Pro Debut!

Cuban 2020 Olympic Standouts Sweep their Professional Debuts!

Roniel Iglesias, Julio Cesar la Cruz, and Arlen Lopez celebrate victory
(clockwise from left) Roniel Iglesias, Julio Cesar la Cruz, Arlen Lopez | Credit: Getty Images

Roniel Iglesias, Arlen Lopez and Julio Cesar la Cruz Win Pro Debuts by Knockout!

The Cuban school of boxing is the most dominant brand of boxing among amateurs. Often the best fighters do not get an opportunity to display their talents on the professional level without defecting. Everything has now changed as Cuba has lifted the ban on professional boxers. Already several top fighters have begun taking advantage of the opportunity.

Fans already know the names of Cuban fighters like two-divisional champions Guillermo Rigondeaux and Erislandy Lara. Then there is WBA Regular super middleweight champion David Morrell, two-time heavyweight title challenger Luis Ortiz and heavyweight prospect Frank Sanchez.

Yet boxing fans are not up to speed on the men who swept the 2020 Olympic games: Roniel Iglesias, Arlen Lopez, and Julio Cesar la Cruz. In other countries, capturing a gold medal guarantees riches waiting for you on the professional level. Promoters line up with offers and promises of making them stars in the sport.

In Cuba, winning a gold medal is business as usual. Fighters may get a parade or a featured article in the paper about them. However, they never got a chance to benefit from the financial aspect of their accomplishment without risking their lives trying to defect. This was due to the 1962 ban by former Prime Minister Fidel Castro preventing fighters from pursuing riches as professionals.


With the ban now lifted, Lopez, Iglesias, and La Cruz are pursuing financial freedom in the professional ranks. On May 20, in Mexico, the aforementioned fighters ran the tables with victories in their debuts, and all won by knockout. Moreover, these fighters must be on the fast track considering their ages range between 33 and 29 years of age.

It shouldn’t be any problem for them to make some noise in their respective divisions, given their high skill levels. Lopez has targeted the light heavyweight division while La Cruz is eyeing the cruiserweight division, and the elder statesman of the clan, Iglesias, entered the junior middleweight ranks.

Fans should keep their eyes on these fighters because they are ready to shake things up in a hurry.

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By: Garrisson Bland

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Garrisson Bland - Head of Public Relations/Senior Journalist. Garrisson is the Head of Public relations for as well as a senior writer. He is also the host of YouTube boxing show "Truth And Facts Sports Talk."