FLEECING THE FANS
While sitting on the PC during the Metroplex' latest cloudburst, I checked the latest boxing schedule on Maxboxing. I don't know how he does it, but it's got fights scheduled six months out and often breaks the information before the media does.
Anyone who's read me on this site knows I'm a boxing fan(atic). And when FanNation finally gets around to giving all like me our very own boxing page, I promise to stop posting on everybody else's favorite sports pages.
But what caught my eye on Maxboxing was the large number of events marked PPV featuring, at best, marginal fighters. David Tua vs. Saul Montana? Jeremy Williams vs. Gary Gomez? Even the upcoming Fernando Vargas/Ricardo Mayorga fight is borderline overpriced despite boasting an incredible undercard featuring Sharmba Mitchell vs. Luis Collazo, Kermit Cintron, Roman Karmazin and Paul Briggs. All this while title fights featuring middleweight champ Arthur Abraham, Jr. welterweight champ Ricardo Torres (vs. fast rising Kendall Holt) and Jr. welterweight champ Junior Witter vs. Vivian Harris (A Ring Magazine #1 vs. #2 showdown) don't even make it to television.
Now, some events are worth marketing as PPV, such as the recent Mayweather/De La Hoya superfight, which made more than $100 million. Believe me, I'm not against making the money in a case like that (though I am against fighters who will only fight if money like that is at stake). Some events people will buy. I remember an event in 2004 that I bought which featured 5 fights. The first two had Zab Judah and Travis Simms fighting (not each other), the third was Hasim Rahman/John Ruiz, the fourth was Cory Spinks' brilliant and shocking upset of Ricardo Mayorga (by far the best fight of the night). Finally, Bernard Hopkins and William Joppy squared off in the main event. In recap, four of those five fights were title fights, all five featured big names and all five (except Rahman/Ruiz) were entertaining fights, well worth the $49.95. But as good as those were, originally there were nine fights on the card.
If promoters insist on sending events to PPV, they should at least include the entire fight card. While it is true some fans only want to see the headliner, others actually want their money's worth. No fight is worth $49.95 on its own, and it might give the viewer a chance to see good young talent on the rise as well. Give them more bang for your bank, promoters. You're not losing any money and in fact you might end up making money. Think about it. A super PPV event with at least eight quality fights at the regular PPV price. Maybe three can be world title fights, another a good matchup, two or three more for lesser or regional titles (IBC, IBO, NABO, NABF), and maybe one or two four-rounders. The paying customer deserves it. Give it to them.
MY DREAM FIGHT
I decided long ago that, as much as I enjoyed watching boxers, I knew I would not be joining their ranks. However, there is one fight that I would gladly drop everything temporarily and train for, one opponent who could lure me from the console and onto the canvas. His name?
Of course, there would be contractual issues regarding a proper fight weight. After all, wouldn't want this to be a Mike Tyson/Julio Cesar Chavez or Roy Jones/Felix Trinidad...oh, wait, strike that. That last one is happening. Maybe instead of a catch weight we can agree on a liberal margin of error, like say +/- 40 or 50 pounds.
But seriously, I can't recall the last person, especially someone I didn't even know, that I would just love to get into a fight with. Maybe it's because Donaghy has become such a public case and is such as weasel when you really look at it. The reports of his abusive and intimidating treatment of his neighbors (he supposedly set a tractor or lawnmower on fire) is enough by itself. I get along with my neighbors just fine but I wouldn't tolerate them getting in my wife's face. Besides, Texas is a Castle Doctrine state now. Be warned.
But even worse is Donaghy's acting like he is one of the mob and therefore someone to be feared. Does he really think he scares anyone? Even the dumbest underling in the five families knows that if enough average people wanted to wipe them off the map badly enough it would be done yesterday, and the law wouldn't do a thing about it. Besides, I like to think the inspiration for Vito and Michael Corleone is much smarter than to bring a nappy-headed rat like Donaghy on. He's the one who should be worried right now, about the mob of referee colleagues he's about to stab in the back. He'll be the one needing a favor so he won't be sleeping with the fishes.
Anyway, back to the fight. San Quentin Arena, Friday the 13th, sometime in the next 12-25 years. No rush. Oh, and we'll use the unified rules of boxing, with a couple wrinkles. No 3-knockdown rule, only the referee can stop the fight (which I will pay him piles of cash not to), you can be saved by the bell in any round if it looks like you might not make the ten-count, and in case of a headbutt we don't have time to check the scorecards. As the song says, "Walk it out, walk it out, walk it out, walk it out (repeat ad nauseum)."
The only detail left to be ironed out is whether I would try to blast him out of there quickly or punish him for 15 rounds. Guess you'll have to buy the fight and see. Full blow-by blow in the next blog.*
*No contract for any fight, no matter how desired, with Tim Donaghy or any other lowlife has been signed or sought. This blog is a work of satire and is intended for those with a sense of humor. If this does not apply to you, there is an altar call and you may yet be saved.