Arnulfo Obando, the man behind the best boxer on the planet Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, died Monday, a week after suffering a stroke and undergoing surgery for a brain aneurysm.
The former professional boxer, undefeated at 3-0, was 54 years old.
Obando’s training accolades date back to 2003 when he led Eduardo Ray Marquez to a knockout victory for the WBO minimumweight championship.
Obando took over the reins of Gonzalez’s boxing training in 2010 from Gustavo Herrera. Under his new trainer, Chocolatito amassed three world titles and in as many weight classes, no less.
Gonzalez has been deeply affected by the tragedy. Twitter has traced the dark timeline from Gonzalez’s pleas for prayer last week to pictures Monday of the anguish shared by Gonzalez and Obando’s family at the hospital in Nicaragua.
The duo enjoyed another tremendous year in 2016, defending the WBC Flyweight strap for the fourth time and jumping up to 115 pounds to unseat Carlos Cuadras for a super Flyweight title. Chocolatito’s camp has been in talks for a rematch with Cuadras in 2017.
For now, the four-weight world champion’s future in the ring remains uncertain.
And after the passing of Obando, such an integral part of Gonzalez’s success, that much gloomier.
Photo by Chris Farina/K2