Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Stephen Espinoza Denies Televised Boxing Is Dead

Boxing was just shaken up after the announcement of Canelo Alvarez’s recent broadcast deal. Alvarez signed the most lucrative deal by an athlete ever. A broadcast deal with the streaming service DAZN worth $365 million. Alvarez’s former broadcast partner, HBO, is no longer in the boxing business. This forced the Mexican star to find a new home after fulfilling his contract.

Top Rank’s Bob Arum said he believes Showtime will follow suit and be out of the boxing business within the next year. That would leave companies like FOX and ESPN to take the reigns in the boxing production game:

“So I’m predicting also that within the next year Showtime will be exiting from boxing because, as great as they’ve been for boxing, they don’t belong,” Arum said.

“Does FOX belong in boxing? Of course they do. They’re a regular network that has a lot of sports. ESPN is perfect for boxing. That’s where it’s going. The world never stays the same. It always changes. Their time has now passed.”

Showtime Sports President Stephen Espinoza recently responded to these comments on Twitter:

“So one fighter moves from HBO to a streaming service, & that means boxing on both premium TV & PPV are over? OK, whatever. Keep believing what those press releases say. Meanwhile, we’ve been streaming all our fights (& series) since 2015, well before anyone else was doing that.”

What do you think about Espinoza’s comments regarding the status of boxing’s broadcasting?