I know the majority of the readers that come here are pretty hostile towards boxing, and I can understand that. Good boxing bouts are few and far between, and most of the people in that scene have been calling MMA (and by extension, MMA fans) gutter trash since it began. But if you needed another reason to convince you to watch Kelly Pavlik vs Bernard Hopkins on Saturday night, here’s one: it’s a good way to tell if Golden Boy is serious about getting into our sport. MMA Payout explains:
There are several promotional tools that by their presence or lack thereof during these next three big PPV cards will indicate if Golden Boy are serious about MMA. Will we see any of the participants on the January Affliction show at the boxing cards? They need to have Fedor and Arlovski front and center at the fights, all of them preferably and the De La Hoya fight in particular. The De La Hoya fight may be a problem as Fedor usually goes into seclusion prior to his fights while training in Stary Oskol. Having them in-arena for a quick interview or camera shot will help further their acceptance. Will this generate PPV sales in and of itself? No, but it is part of a process.
Another item to look for will be what kind of advertising they do for the Affliction card within their PPV programming. The Fedor and Arlovski spots that ran on the EliteXC: Heat card need to be front and center to generate some interest in the match-up. Having that Fedor vs Tim Sylvia commercial seemingly on a loop like it was on CBS can only help things.
Also, What kind of branding of the Affliction card will we see during the next three big Golden Boy cards? Will there be adverts on the ring apron or the ring canvas with ads touting “Fedor vs Arlovski January 2009â€³ emblazoned on them. In-Arena signage, signage at the press conference, weigh-ins etc. are other small things but are indicative of a constant pushing of the MMA concept to the boxing crowd.
So will Golden Boy go balls to the wall pimping out it’s MMA product in January? Or is it going to try and keep it’s products seperate? Whatever happens, you’re going to know a lot more about their partnership with Affliction than you’d find out by talking to the people in charge. Actions speak louder than words, ya know?