Boxing has a pretty rich history of fighting not being contained to inside the ring. It being a “Wild West” sport, not subject to containment by a central office, league and/or commissioner, we often see parties go at it in courts of law, as well as the squared circle.
Lawyers have been tussling the last few months, after Oscar De La Hoya and Golden Boy tried to convince a court in California that Haymon sought to “monopolize the sport of boxing” and engaged in anti-competitive practices to further that aim.
Today, jan. 26, a judge decided to dismiss the Golden Boy claim, offering a judgement that “the Plaintiffs have failed to demonstrate the requisite injury as a result of the defendants’ alleged violations of the Ali Act.”
That quoted wording comes from a 24 page judgement from the court, and therein it’s also stated, “Plaintiffs have been unable to present any evidence of harm to competition.” And, the “Plaintiffs’ claims of violation of the California Unfair Practices Act…and unfair competition..are dismissed without predjudice.”
Putting on my pretend lawyer hat, I did note that within the judgement it was written, “The Court recently became aware from newspaper articles that another fight between a Haymon-advised boxer and a Golden Boy promoted boxer was announced—Canelo Alvarez v Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., scheduled for May 6, 2017. This is being touted, and will be promoted, as the “biggest all-Mexican fight in boxing history.”
Boiled down, it is hard to prove a foe is monopolizing the market when you are doing business with them in what promises to be a very, very lucrative promotion. Bottom line, Golden Boy works with a golden goose, in Canelo, and is doing a-ok, so the court wasn’t convinced that they’d been grievously hurt by the Haymon-PBC play.
I requested a response or statement from Golden Boy, as well as Haymon Boxing, and will insert those as available.
UPDATE: Haymon Boxing sent out this release:
STATEMENT FROM MICHAEL WILLIAMS OF THE LAW FIRM QUINN EMANUEL, THE LEAD COUNSEL IN THE GOLDEN BOY LAWSUIT AGAINST AL HAYMON.
THE OTHER LAW FIRM INVOLVED IN THE LAWSUIT WAS KINSELLA, WEITZMAN, ISER, KUMP & ALDISERT LLP.
On behalf of our clients, Haymon Sports, LLC and its CEO, Alan Haymon, we are very pleased with the decision of the Court to grant summary judgment and dismiss all of the meritless claims filed by Golden Boy Promotions.
The Court’s ruling makes clear that the efforts by Haymon Sports were intended to, and actually did, increase competition in the boxing industry, to the benefit of the boxers, other promoters, and the fans.
Golden Boy’s invocation of the Ali Act — which the Court recognized exists to protect boxers, not promoters – was especially hypocritical given that the Court cited evidence that confirms Haymon Sports has consistently looked to protect the interests of its boxers against one-sided and oppressive promoter contracts.
Any decline in Golden Boy’s business cannot be attributed to the hard work and legal activities of my clients.
We remain disappointed that Golden Boy chose to use the court system to try and stifle lawful competition and make false and unsupported accusation about my clients.