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Guillermo Rigondeaux and Roc Nation Sports agree to amicably part ways

Promoter Roc Nation Sports and Guillermo Rigondeaux came to an agreement Thursday on an amicable mutual release that makes the former junior featherweight world titleholder a free agent, Roc Nation promoter Dino Duva told ESPN.

According to Duva, Rigondeaux's promotional contract with the company had about a year to go.

"But we weren't able to come up with anything significant for him, and he's in the later part of his career, so if he's a free agent, maybe he can go make a fight for himself," Duva said. "We're OK with that and we wish him the best."

Roc Nation Sports signed Rigondeaux in late 2015 after he had fought two fights in a row in Asia after essentially being banished from American television because of a non-entertaining, defensive style.

In all, Roc Nation was involved in Rigondeaux's past four bouts. After signing him, the company immediately added him to the Miguel Cotto-Canelo Alvarez HBO PPV undercard in November 2015, and although he defeated Drian Francisco by unanimous 10-round decision, it was a dreadful fight that did nothing to raise his stock.

He went to England for his next fight and broke James Dickens' jaw in a second-round knockout win to retain his 122-pound world title before boxing on the Andre Ward-Sergey Kovalev II HBO PPV undercard.

Rigondeaux, 37, a Cuban defector fighting out of Miami, Florida, knocked out Moises Flores in the first round of a title defense on that card, but the fight-ending punch came after the bell and the result was overturned to a no contest and a rematch was ordered.

But rather than face Flores again in a fight with no public interest, Duva made a deal with Top Rank for Rigondeaux to move up two weight divisions to junior lightweight to challenge pound-for-pound king Vasiliy Lomachenko in December in a heavily hyped Top Rank Boxing on ESPN main event -- the first-ever match between boxers who had each won two Olympic gold medals.

Rigondeaux (17-1, 11 KOs) got wiped out. Lomachenko badly outclassed him before Rigondeaux meekly quit on his stool after the sixth round because of a bruised hand, a decision that drew heavy criticism.

Duva admitted that the way he lost to Lomachenko hurt their chances of bringing Rigondeaux back in a meaningful fight.

"It hurt him big time," Duva said. "Losing to Lomachenko isn't horrible because he's a great fighter, but the way it ended definitely hurt and made it that much difficult to get him back on U.S. television. The ending was unfortunate, but he can still fight, and I hope he gets another shot to prove himself.

"I'm happy for the time we worked with him. He had some very good performances, but he was hurt a little bit by the lack of U.S. television interest over the past few years. Some of it was due to his lack of excitement in the ring and that was always a struggle. But the truth is, he is an all-time great fighter at his weight class. I wish him the best."