- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
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New Jersey-based junior middleweight contender Pawel Wolak (29-1-1, 19 KOs) of Poland, who fought to a majority draw with Delvin Rodriguez in a fight of the year candidate July 15 in New York on ESPN2's "Friday Night Fights," signed Thursday with manager Cameron Dunkin.
Wolak is promoted by Top Rank, which does a tremendous amount of business with Dunkin. Wolak, 29, who showed enormous heart to make it to the final bell in the all-action slugfest -- despite a grotesquely swollen right eye -- had been managed by Ivan Edwards. Wolak said their contract expired and that he signed a three-year deal with Dunkin.
"I feel like I won a world title just by having Cameron take my career under his wings," Wolak told ESPN.com. "Just look at his success and who he handles."
Dunkin has managed numerous world champions, including the late Diego Corrales, Johnny Tapia, Danny Romero and Stevie Johnston. He currently manages bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire, junior welterweight titlist Timothy Bradley Jr., former middleweight champ Kelly Pavlik, lightweight titlist Brandon Rios, featherweight contender Miguel Angel "Mikey" Garcia and many others.
"With my relentlessness in the ring and (Dunkin's) outside, we will have an incredible relationship together," Wolak said. "Some things you just know how they will end and I know this is just the beginning of something special."
"He's a great kid and he just seems like a really good person. He's exciting, he really is. He's a fun guy to watch and just has a great attitude," Dunkin said. "He's just someone you want to work with. We'll find something that makes sense for him. We'll come up with a game plan, a strategy that makes sense where he can earn a living in boxing, but we haven't discussed the specifics yet. I'll talk to Top Rank and see what their ideas are. I have my ideas and they'll have theirs."
A rematch with Rodriguez has been discussed, possibly for the pay-per-view undercard of the Miguel Cotto-Antonio Margarito rematch at Madison Square Garden. But Wolak would also like a shot at a title.
"I am conflicted over the much talked about rematch with Delvin," Wolak said. "I am a fans' fighter and I would love to do it again. Business, however, might not allow me. Thankfully, I have people in my corner interested solely in my future, so they will determine what makes most business sense for me. I have always said I want titles."
His preference is to challenge titlist Cornelius "K9" Bundrage or perhaps middleweight titlist Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., whom he was supposed to fight Dec. 4 on a Top Rank PPV card after injured Alfonso Gomez, Chavez's original opponent, dropped out. However, eventually Chavez also dropped out because of illness and Wolak would up defeating Jose Pinzon on the undercard.
"I want Bundrage, who he says nobody wants to fight him. Lets do it (on) Dec. 3. big stage," Wolak said. "Put up the belt and let's make it happen. Of course, I want to finish business with Chavez Jr., who maybe will one day get it on with me."
Wolak also mentioned a desire to fight the winner of the Sept. 17 bout between titlist Saul "Canelo" Alvarez and Gomez.
"Let's see what happens," Wolak said.
In March, Wolak scored the biggest win of his career when he made former junior middleweight titlist Yuri Foreman quit after the sixth round on the Cotto-Ricardo Mayorga pay-per-view undercard.
Dan Rafael covers boxing for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.