I'm a boxing fan to the death. Make no mistake about it. To me, boxing is the single greatest sport on earth - hands down. With that in mind, it's going through some hard times right now, some really hard times. That doesn't mean I believe the sport is going to fall off the face of the earth. Indeed, I feel the sweet science will eventually have its day in the sun again.
With all that in mind, however, I'm starting to wonder if things will get worse before they get better. An analyst I admire the other day essentially stated that some of us knock the sport of boxing too much. Frankly, there's a lot to bitch about. A whole lot. The past few months have been nothing short of a dead zone for televised boxing. That's simply inexcusable.
What's more, it seems like HBO level fights may now appear on pay per view. Mature, reasoned people can give me all the mature, reasoned explanations for this they want - but the fact remains the fans aren't getting what they want. HBO isn't the only issue, however. Oscar De La Hoya speaks of marinating a Canelo-GGG fight as if it were a chicken dinner. What's more, Al Haymon has largely pressed down on the brake pedal when it comes to airing fights on more or less free television - a year or so after he gobbled up a ton air time.
What's this leave fans with? The possibility of all kinds of pay per view events except the ones that they really want. And possibly a lot less boxing on television, to boot. Sure, Showtime has a decent lineup at the moment - but who's to say the network will stay interested in boxing? No one, that's who.
To sum it all up:
Pointless pay per view events may be promoted while legitimate pay per view events indefinitely marinate. Meanwhile, fewer fights may appear on regular television and pay cable. In other words, fans may well be given far less in the near future while being charged hard earned money for even that little bit. Does anyone think this sort of thing, if it happens, will bode well for the sport?
Let's hope a new page is turned sooner rather than later.