Digesting the News: Showtime Boxing Ending This Year



Digesting the News: Showtime Boxing Ending This Year

The news made the rounds in the morning and afternoon. Bittersweet is maybe the best description of the take some of the Showtime folks had as they pondered the move, that parent company Paramount would be forging ahead, without boxing as part of the platform.

We’d heard that maybe 2024 would be the last year, that they’d do PPVs, presumably with OG partner Haymon Boxing/PBC. But no, the entire department is gone at the end of the year.

Espinoza Will Be Out, As Showtime Boxing Program Finishes The Year

That includes Showtime Boxing boss Stephen Espinoza, who has enjoyed (for him to say, but I’d guess overall he’d say enjoyed) an atypical lengthy time at this helm.

I still recall the first chat I had with him after he’d first been appointed, it was leading in to a Barclays Center show. He seemed unassuming, low key, intelligent, respectful, overall.

Stephen Espinoza, hea dof boxing at Showtime

Nope, didn’t always love everything he did and they did, boxing was/is in a strange position in the coming-out-of-Floyd Mayweather era age. Hell, the world is.

Interesting, in that just yesterday (Oct 16), Espinoza had a “wait and see” air about the boxing program.

But, it seems as though Paramount is happy to have their CBS people produce sports, so change is coming. That always happens, like it or not.

All in all, you have to give Espinoza at Showtime Boxing a solid grade for stability amid an atmosphere of corporate instability.

Bottom lines, more than ever, spur decisions, and “our thing” is a niche product which is less easy to handle, to produce, than many titans and wizards have assumed coming in.

I will assume there will be new titans and wizards acquainting themselves with the strange, seedy, superlative sport that is boxing, long may it live, such as it is….


Founder/editor Michael Woods got addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the then-impregnable Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist has covered the sport since for ESPN The Magazine,, Bad Left Hook and RING. His journalism career started with NY Newsday in 1999. Michael Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and for Facebook Fightnight Live, since 2017.