HOUSTON – Nonito Donaire Jr. is now a certified boxing superstar.
The 'Filipino Flash' is set to receive US$1 million when he squares off with Jorge Arce of Mexico this Saturday (Sunday, Manila time) – easily the biggest purse of his fight career.
And according to him, it’s only the beginning of bigger things to come.
“You just have to keep on winning, that’s the main thing,” said the 30-year-old Donaire, who is staking his World Boxing Organization (WBO) super-bantamweight title against the durable challenger from Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico.
Donaire was getting purses in the US$800,000 range in his previous fights, but this is the first time he hit the seven-figure mark.
His 12-round title match against Arce is his fourth for the year, having taken on - and beaten - the likes of Wilfredo Vazquez Jr., Jeffrey Mathebula, and Toshiaki Nishioka earlier on.
Given the way he fought actively this year, the former US Olympic team aspirant wants to maintain the pace by 2013.
“I’m open to do three (fights next year), but if I can do four I would. I want to do more than two (fights),” he said. “Okay din naman sa akin kung two fights, but gusto ko talaga I would be able to fight. I have to stay busy as I can, I just have to maximize everything.”
Unlike before when fights came few and far between for him, more marquee matches began finding him shortly after he moved up in weight this year.
“There wasn’t much network kasi that wants to buy in the smaller division,” he explained. “But when I went up to 122, they want me to fight more on their network. The more I reach a higher level in weight, the more they’ll put me in their network.”
Now, Top Rank Promotions wants all of his fights to be calendared on HBO just like this year, with a possible first bout for 2013 set in March.
And that means the cash register will keep on ringing for boxing’s new millionaire.