“WAKE UP EVERYBODY NO MORE SLEEPIN’ IN BED”
San Francisco, CA
Teddy Pendergrass Addresses “Boxing Establishment”
– “Wake up everybody no more sleepin’ in bed. No more backward thinkin’ time for thinkin’ ahead. The (boxing) world has changed so very much from what it used to be, but there’s still so much hatred, war an’ poverty.”
BEFORE NEAR MAINSTREAM DEATH OF BOXING
When the late Teddy Pendergrass laid those lyrics to vinyl in 1975, boxing was enjoying the last run of Muhammad Ali, fights were on Network TV (ABC, CBS, NBC) and even the most avid and diehard boxing fan might only pay once or twice a year to watch boxing via Closed Circuit TV on big screens in theaters and sports bars.
PPV MEANS TAX FREE MONEY FOR PROMOTERS
Then for some inexplicable reason, the “Boxing Establishment” seemingly allowed Network TV to get away. Why? As it turned out, the “Establishment” saw that with even small Pay Per View productions, there were piles of incoming cash and in this world, the boxing world, money seemingly trumps all. For example, a minuscule 20,000 PPV buys at $50 per means $1,000,000 for the promotion to split with the TV provider.
RAY LEONARD-TOMMY HEARNS I “FIRST” HOME PPV
By 1990, or nine years after Ray Leonard-Tommy Hearns topped the first ever residential Pay Per View, the “Boxing Establishment,” after having ridiculed the late PPV pioneer Dan Duva by saying, “PPV would kill the boxing business,” these same entities did a 180′ degree turn and have since made millions of shekels forcing sometimes multiple monthly PPV cards on fans.
TV KO STARTED MONTHLY MONEY THEFT FROM FIGHT FANS
Now 25 years after the incarnation of a then monthly Pay Per View series known as TV KO (now HBO PPV) kicked the series off I believe with middleweight king Michael Nunn being throttled by James Toney in what was more than a “mild” upset that went for $19.95. While this form of boxing marketing was profitable, little by little, the average sports fan lost “touch” (outa’ sight, outa’ mind) with boxing sans any free exposure on Network TV.
AL HAYMON BOXING IS “ELEPHANT” IN THE ROOM
Now in 2015 the “Boxing Establishment
” watches as an “Elephant
” that’s actually not in their room, is bringing boxing to various Networks, some major, some start ups. But having had eight TV dates in September on Network & non-paying Cable TV channels, how can this be construed as nothing but
WBO Prez Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel
a God send for both the fans and fighters?
HAYMON & WBO SHOULD TRY TO “WORK IT OUT”
The only transparent sanctioning body in boxing is the World Boxing Organization. Outgoing Assn. of Boxing Commissions chieftain Tim Lueckenhoff stated just that anytime the subject was broached. I think Premier Boxing Champions’ czar Al Haymon should realize such and recognize that he needs to surround himself with an organization led by a man with the stellar stature of Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel.
AT THE END OF THE DAY FIGHT FANS…
No Network TV Meant Zillions for Bob Arum
The bottom line is the once
brilliant minds that encompass the “Boxing Establishment
,” milked fans dry for decades and in the minds of many are only getting their comeuppance. And instead of these multi-millionaires bitching and moaning about the “Elephant” Al Haymon squeezing them out, Bob Arum
, et al, should instead take parts of the “Elephant” methodology and work equally hard to air their boxing on Network/Cable TV and not Pay Per View
Note: Mr. Fernandez is an award-winning writer, TV commentator, radio talk show host, former San Francisco Policeman, licensed California Private Investigator and four-time Golden Gloves boxing champion, who also pens feature stories for the R & B band Tower of Power. Comments regarding this submission can be left below.
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CAUSE OF BOXING NEAR DEATH NO NETWORK TV