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TOP RANK & truTV PARTNER TO SHOWCASE BOXING

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April 5, 2015 Queens, NY  Boxing is starting to boom.  Well, that’s a modest exaggeration, but the recent deal between Top Rank Inc. and truTV substantiate the notion that boxing is back.  Premier Boxing Champions, which is airing across various networks, CBS, NBC, and Spike, is operating under the auspices of uber boxing manager/promoter Al Hayman.  Not to be outdone is arguably the sport’s greatest promoter, Bob Arum, who has been promoting fights for six decades.  The yet-to-be-named boxing series will be airing fights on truTV which is associated with Turner Broadcasting.  Turner and HBO are both under the Time Warner umbrella and will be marketing the Friday night boxing broadcasts.

truTV caters to a younger demographic and combat sports are watched primarily by a male audience in the 18-35 year old age range.  Advertisers in the following categories will jump at the opportunity to attach their ads to this kind of programming: beverage (alcoholic/non-alcoholic); automobiles; health & beauty (e.g., Axe, Right Guard, Dove); movies (e.g., Furious 7, Paul Blart 2); cell phones; quick service restaurants; etc.

The first card is set to air Friday, May 1, at 10 p.m.  This comes the day before the mega fight, Mayweather-Pacquiao.  The main event features a lightweight title fight between Takahiro Ao of Japan (27-3-1. 16 KOs) and Mexican Raymundo Beltran (29-7-1, 17 KOs).  In the fight leading up to the main event, Canadian Mikael Zewski (26-0, 23 KOs) will face Konstantin Ponomarev of Russia (27-0, 13 KOs).

For over two decades, ESPN has aired “Friday Night Fights,” and now, they see, the broadcast landscape becoming increasingly crowded.  Part of the appeal for boxing resides in the fact that boxing, as a sport, as no off-season.  Every month is ripe for a big fight even though historically, the biggest fights have occurred in May, June, September, October, and November.  Now, with boxing being given unprecedented exposure, it’s up to the matchmakers, promoters, and, most importantly, the fighters, to take advantage of the opportunity.  If the fights are entertaining (because sports are about entertainment), you will see higher viewership and more advertising revenue which will keep the sport in the public eye.  If the matches are non-competitive and void of action, boxing will go back to the scrap heap and face being ignored for another three decades.

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