Attitude, Moxie, and Al Haymon

By Robert Ecksel on March 5, 2015
Attitude, Moxie, and Al Haymon
Imagine what boxing would have been like without HBO and Showtime televising fights.

The cable giants’ hegemony is being threatened, but if they act accordingly, the sport will benefit in ways that were unimaginable just a year ago…

Well it’s Saturday night and I just got paid
A fool about my money don’t try to save
My heart says go, go have a time
‘Cause it’s Saturday night babe and I’m feelin’ fine

I’m gonna rock it up, I’m gonna rip it up
I’m gonna shake it up, gonna ball it up
I’m gonna rip it up and ball tonight

(“Rip It Up” by Robert Blackwell & John Marascalco)

One doesn’t have to be ancient to recall when boxing was on regular TV. It may seem like a million years ago, but before there was cable, before the internet, before the myriad electronic gewgaws that have come to define life at warp speed and sans privacy, even before boxing was relegated to the back pages of the back pages, the sweet science had a presence.

Al Haymon remembers those days. While others were looking elsewhere, presumably at their bottom lines, he saw the writing on the wall. It may have been a barely decipherable scrawl lamenting the death of the sport of sports, but Haymon, armed with capital and moxie, decided to do something about it.

Call him visionary. Call him mercenary. Call him superstitious. Call him what you will. But whatever you call Al Haymon, you cannot call him complacent. Unlike the power brokers that preceded him, who happily made hay while the sport sank, Haymon takes nothing for granted. He is a man with a plan and he has stuck to that plan, come hell or high water and whatever the cost.

The first fruits of that attitude can be seen Saturday night on NBC (8:30 PM ET/5:30 PM PT) when WBA welterweight champion Keith Thurman (24-0, 21 KOs) defends his title against former two-division world champion Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (32-2-1, 18 KOs) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In the co-main event on Haymon Boxing’s inaugural Premier Boxing Champions card on NBC, the first of five cards planned for 2015, former three-division champion Adrien Broner (27-2, 22 KOs) gets it on with rugged John Molina Jr. (27-5, 22 KOs).

The third fight of the night features former bantam and featherweight champion Abner Mares (28-1-1, 15 KOs) going up against Arturo Santos Reyes (18-4, 5 KOs).

One can quibble if one wants about the quality of opposition, but it would mean forgetting the opponents (and fights) which preceded them. That is not to knock HBO and Showtime. Imagine what boxing would have been like for the last 30 years without them. It is, instead, an opportunity to remind HBO and Showtime that supremacy isn’t a constant or reward for past achievements. It’s turf that needs to be defended.

Nothing lasts forever. It might be time for a change. The aforementioned cable giants will not and must not disappear. This is a chance for them to step up their game. Their hegemony is being threatened, but if they act accordingly, which may be difficult with the shallow talent pool at their disposal, the sport will benefit in ways that were unimaginable just a year ago.

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

Thurman vs. Guerrero & Broner vs. Molina | GP Promo



Little Richard - Rip It Up



Read More Blogs
Discuss this in our forums

Related Articles

Comments

This is a place to express and/or debate your boxing views. It is not a place to offend anyone. If we feel comments are offensive, the post will be deleted and continuing offenders will be blocked from the site. Please keep it clean and civil! We want to have fun. We want some salty language and good-natured exchanges. But let's keep our punches above the belt...
  1. Kid Blast 11:12am, 03/06/2015

    Jim Crue, I was ring side for many of Jack Johnson’s bouts.

  2. The Prince 10:25am, 03/06/2015

    Thank you so much Al Haymon.

  3. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 08:22am, 03/06/2015

    Super Flyweight Rex Tso towers over Bob Arum….I knew he was a dwarf!

  4. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 09:20pm, 03/05/2015

    Speaking of moxie….why the fuk are dwarfs so successful?....Friggin’ Stallone is only 5’2” for Christ’s sake!

  5. Jim Crue 03:31pm, 03/05/2015

    Robert,
    I love the sport and have been following boxing since watching Kid Gavilan in the early 50’s on TV. I am always humbled by some of the posts on this site. One of the guys, I forget who, saw Graziano vs Billy Arnold. Holy Cow!!
    I sure hope Haymon’s scheme works. Fingers crossed.

  6. Robert Ecksel 03:09pm, 03/05/2015

    It wouldn’t surprise me. Boxing and corruption go hand in hand and have since the beginning of time. I believe he made his money on Wall Street, about which no more needs to be said. Maybe optimism is nothing more than grasping at straws, but the darkness is so pervasive, almost any ray of light looks promising.

  7. Jim Crue 02:59pm, 03/05/2015

    Right Irish…
    I do not understand the fascination with Haymon. As I wrote in my previous post his entire scheme stinks of corruption. I hope I am wrong but bet I’m not

  8. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 02:46pm, 03/05/2015

    Roach says he’s having trouble getting sparring partners for Manny because of Haymon.

  9. Jim Crue 12:55pm, 03/05/2015

    Jury is out. Didn’t Jim Norris and his IBC try a similar thing 60 years ago. That did not work out. If one guy controls so many fighters and he has his fighters fighting each other it smells of foul play, think Chuck Davey, or like WEE which boxing is getting very close to becoming

  10. Kid Blast 09:53am, 03/05/2015

    Got it.

  11. Robert Ecksel 09:50am, 03/05/2015

    Haymon has scooped up most of the talent. I’m not sure that HBO and Showtime fit in with his plans.

  12. Kid Blast 09:40am, 03/05/2015

    “shallow talent pool”  Why do you say that?

Leave a comment