Boxing media are accustomed by now to a not set in stone but pretty regular schedule for fight week ahead of bigtime shows.
Wednesday, the media workout. Thursday, the press conference. Friday is weigh in day, and Saturday is fight night.
That was the way it as going to go, per the schedule sent out April 13 by the Showtime crew, as they looked ahead to the Saturday, April 21 fight night at Barclays Center, to be topped by an Adrien Broner vs. Jessie Vargas junior welterweight plus catchweight faceoff.
But the schedule got adjusted on Tuesday late morning, and the media workout that was to have been done at the famed and fabled Gleason’s Gym was scratched. At noon on Wednesday, Jermall Charlo was set to meet media, and then Jesus Cuellar, Vargas, Heather Hardy, Gervonta Davis, Hugo Centeno and then Adrien Broner, at 2 PM, were on the sched to meet fight writers and videographers.
But now, no. A press conference Thursday will take place, as scheduled, as will a Friday weigh in, open to the public.
So, why the change of plans? Was it, as was kind of alleged by TMZ, because Broner had been online beefing with rapper Takashi 6ix9ine, and they’d exchanged threats?
“Ey 6ix9ine, don’t be commenting no f*ck sh*t under my pictures, boy. Talkin’ bout clown, n**ga … I’m about to pull up on you, n**ga,” Broner said. That could constitute a heavy threat…and did organizers decide that it would be wiser to maybe let that situation settle first, before moving ahead with an event that could be marred if the rapper (who has quite the zesty Wikiedia entry, btw) decided to escalate the feud, and show up?
What about it, Showtime? Did this boxer-rapper beef mess up the media workout?
Showtime communications VP Chris Deblasio responded, with a “no.”
“We opted to do in-studio interviews tomorrow with HOT97, El Nuevo Dia (at their offices), BET, and a small host of others,” he told us. “Due to fighters’ travel plus the various shows’ schedules we had to do them during what was already planned as the optimal time for the open workout… We are hoping the workout media will attend Thursday’s conference to get what they need.”
This is for certain…the beef has been good for pub, as evidenced by the big old ad running right now on TMZ. Promoter Lou Dibella also told us on the Everlast podcast “Talkbox” that tix have been getting snapped up, and they will be adding more availability.