About the only thing worth noting from this weekend’s De La Hoya squash match was the fact that Affliction was prominently featured in the ring and arena, prompting a lot of people to question whether Golden Boy and the clothing company had truly parted ways on a proposed MMA promotion. Well, don’t believe me … believe Oscar, who made a statement during a recent press conference that we MMA fans (wrapped in our cocoon of boxing hatred) never heard about:
“We decided that we are going to focus all our energies on promoting boxing,” said De La Hoya at a recent press conference. “Boxing is the game that we have to focus on because there’s so much room for growth and the potential is enormous. We definitely want to capitalize on that and have all our focus and energy be on taking boxing to another level.”
For some reason, this news makes me happy. I’m about as fed up as can be with companies that have no experience organizing MMA shows hopping on board and giving things a shot. Usually it just takes them months and months to organize a single poorly executed event which ties up fighters that would otherwise be considering contracts with other organizations.
Am I the only one who’s happy with having two or three major promotions in the US and a few in Japan? That seems like a good number … it provides enough content to keep the ball rolling but not enough to over saturate the market. Fighters are more likely to get fair value since they actually have a few options, but the market won’t devolve into bidding wars because you’ve got semi-stable companies trying to make things work, not new companies willing to blow their loads trying to get a toehold in the scene.
The whole Affliction promotion looks to me like a company that has more dollars than sense. Word is they’re looking at a 6 million dollar price tag just on the talent for their first event (if it even gets off the ground), and while I’ll happily watch their product, I’ll still wonder about it’s effect on the health of the overall MMA scene. The majority of fighters on the card are guys who have priced themselves out of the range of fiscally responsible promotions, and it can’t be good to actually encourage that kind of behavior.