Eddie Hearn Looks At New Boxing Landscape, Wonders If Sho Can Hang In
Eddie Hearn has been a fairly fascinating addition to the American boxing promotional scene. He’s parachuted in and put a heavy stamp on the sport, with his DAZN alliance.
The money being spent by Perform has opened up eyes and shifted the tectonic plates of the order of the sweet science busines landscape. You don’t think maybe that their entry wasn’t at least a factor in HBO pulling up their stake after 45 years in the realm?
Hearn came on the Randy Gordon/Gerry Cooney SIRIUS radio show Friday…
…and producer Josh Friedman alerted us to his hit. He touched on a remark made by Bob Arum a week ago, when the Bobfather speculated that Showtime would be following HBO out the door after not too long. Now, Showtime would beg to differ and even more importantly, they seem well situated and entrenched in the game. They haven’t sent out signals of weakness like HBO did. So they’d tell you to take anything Arum said with two grains of salt. Anyway, that doesn’t mean Hearns’ remarks aren’t at the least thought provoking:
“Bob [Arum]'s a very bright man. I mean yes I give Bob incredible amounts of respect because I mean at 86 years old I probably wouldn't be there or wouldn't be in boxing. His drive and his desire is incredible and he knows the game inside out. You know I was asked whether I agree with his point on Showtime. I think that the boxing world is gone absolutely crazy. The money moving in the circles of boxing is crazy and sometimes you know the value is not there. So I think HBO looks at it and said this is nuts. We spend so much money to be competitive. We don't feel like we gave value as a platform. And I really wouldn't be surprised if Showtime did decide that. Stephen Espinosa loves the sport of boxing but it's not about Stephen Espinosa. You know it's down to the bosses of the platform. wouldn't bet against Showtime looking at the sport in a year's time and just say this is this is just getting ahead and we can't be major players. And if we can't be major players then wer'e out. So we'll see. They're committed to the sport for now.”
Now remember, most of the boxing big league promoters have for decades off and on, more ON, liked to go at each other. They bust chops on each other and then occasionally cool off long enough to make a brief alliance. But Hearn seems to default to not really going that route…
“HBO leaving was a big shock,” he continued. “You know, I think it was sad for boxing. There were many people that were over the moon that HBO was gone, but not me. You know I feel like HBO has been a major part of boxing and a major brand… I really feel that the more competition in boxing, the more broadcasters spending money, you know, the better shape the sport is in.”
So, it doesn't FEEL like Hearn is planting a seed of negativity, looking to make Sho look weaker so he can snag some talent, by insinuating they are damaged goods. But then again, it would be naive to think that sort of thing isn't done at this level of business…
Your thoughts, friends?