Friday, May 20, 2016

Like It Or Not, Personality Matters In Boxing

I have to admit I'm uncomfortable writing this piece. Those of us who are essentially unassuming types always feel like we're runners up in the great race of life - even when we win - because it's the bombastic or showy or glittery types who seem to get all the attention and love. Indeed, the shining personalities are the ones that draw in attention and interest. It just is what it is.

And it's all particularly true in boxing. In an era of the UFC, an age of strangleholding, headbashing love and adoration, Floyd Mayweather managed to rule supreme, even though he was a technical and highly defensive boxer. Why? Because Floyd's personality was stellar as far as marketing goes. He didn't promote his fighting style - he promoted himself - and it paid off handsomely.

The same rings true for heavyweight kingpin Tyson Fury. Let's face it, the man's upset win over Wladimir Klitscko early last winter was a snooze fest. Yet Fury himself is media dynamite. Call him a hater, a Neanderthal or just plain crazy, the man draws in the kind of attention his considerable fighting skills are just unable to.

All of which brings us to Mr. Canelo Alvarez. Oscar De La Hoya seems to feel that letting a fight between Canelo and GGG marinate indefinitely will torture fans enough to bring about a Mayweather-Pacquiao sized payday. After all, it worked out pretty good for Floyd and Manny, didn't it?

Sure it did - but Canelo's not Floyd. He's kind of unassuming, like the rest of us. Add in the fact that he's not as good a fighter as Floyd and Manny were and Oscar's move is clearly more risky than he himself may think. Like it or not, personality matters in boxing - and Canelo can't bring in eyeballs on personality alone.

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