Ricky Hatton is expected to confirm his return to the ring after calling a press conference in his home city of Manchester, England, for this Friday.
Rumors that the former junior welterweight and welterweight titleholder, 33, is poised to come out of retirement – 14 months after officially calling it a day – have been rife for several weeks.
And they now appear close to becoming reality following a media release from Hatton Promotions on Tuesday revealing the ‘Hitman’ will be making an ‘an important announcement’ at the end of the week.
This time last year Hatton (45-2, 32 knockouts) admitted he became suicidal in the wake of crushing losses to Floyd Mayweather Jr. and then Manny Pacquiao, and had turned to drink and drugs to combat depression. A spell in rehab helped him recover and eventually resulted in him forging a successful career as both promoter and trainer to the Hatton stable.
It seems, however, that the lure of fighting again has proved irresistible to Hatton, whose comeback, if true, is guaranteed to be a huge box-office draw in the UK. Few British boxers have enjoyed the sort of legendary support Hatton did during his all-conquering heyday.
His anticipated return is penciled in for Nov. 24, with Manchester’s MEN Arena, scene of many of his most spectacular wins, the likely venue. According to a recent report in the Daily Star Sunday, Hatton, whose weight always ballooned in between fights, has shed more than 30 pounds in three months.