Written By Bakari Simpson: In a recent interview, conducted by Radio Raheem, veteran promoter Bob Arum lambasted HBO boxing and their top executive Peter Nelson. Never known to be at a loss for words, Arum tore right into Nelson. The Top Rank top dog was adamant that Peter was far too green and unproven to hold the position that he does. Beyond merely inexperienced, Arum would paint Nelson as an exceedingly arrogant character who would never be a good fit for the job.
To help illustrate his point Arum highlighted HBO’s choice to schedule their December 9th Salido/Roman fight directly against Top Ranks Lomachenko/Rigondeaux bout. Loma/Rigo was announced first, more highly regarded and on free television. To sit down and think about it, it did not make a bunch of sense to schedule the HBO prize-fight on the same night as the ESPN show.
Traditionally speaking, this is far from the first time that Arum has aired inflammatory words publicly about a rival. For some time, Bob was openly adversarial with Premier Boxing Champions mastermind Al Haymon. The cantankerous feud boiled over into a $100 million dollar lawsuit that Top Rank levied at Haymon and his business. Ultimately, Al and his businesses were fully exonerated from any-and-all wrong doings and alleged illegalities. Since this time Al and Arum seemingly have mended their relationships.
In fact, one of the more exciting and interesting portions of the interview is when Bob speculated on working with the PBC in the future.
“Let’s not look at promoters particularly, lets look at networks. Over at Showtime Espinosa is a very smart guy. And his boss is the head of CBS, a big fight fan, a good friend of mine, Les Moonves, and Moonves will make these fights happen. And they all can’t be on ESPN, nor can they all be on Showtime, so there is something called ‘trade’…If they need a Top Rank fighter to fight on Showtime, we’ll make it available and they’ll make available a fighter who fights traditionally on Showtime or CBS, make him available to ESPN. I think we’ll work very, very well with them. At least that’s my hope.” -Bob Arum
If Top Rank and the PBC began to work together more regularly, and intimately, this would only benefit the fans and their own roosters.
The two companies have already come together to make Terence Crawford vs. John Molina Jr. This was no small feat. One, because of the aforementioned lawsuit, and two, due to the bitter relationship between Floyd Mayweather and Bob Arum. Arum at one point was Mayweather’s promoter; however, Floyd bought himself out of his contact. After leaving Top Rank Floyd went on to become the most financially successful prizefighter of all time. Many believe Bob was surly that he missed the gravy train. Floyd still works closely with Haymon.
Haymon and crew have largely set up shop with the Showtime boxing.
In regards to Showtime Boxing, Arum was the typical Arum. He spoke his mind, all while pulling no punches.
At the moment this all sounds real good and tantalizing, lets just hope that the fight fans actually see some great fights materialize out of this potential new working situation.
Bakari Simpson INSTAGRAM: @s.larry_love FACEBOOK: Bakari Simpson