The Need To Be Right, The Need To Be First – When Boxing Turned Into Hot Stove Talk Rather Than The Sport Itself
Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury, may or may not be fighting on July 24th, yet for most reading this, they might scratch their heads, as seemingly every credible and well-respected journalist has stated the fight is off. That may very well be true, BUT…I like to see a promoter send an official press release before I take it as a fact, and the silence is deafening the fact that no one promoting the fight has commented.
The world of boxing has become more about the gossip, the positioning of fighters, management of careers in a Nikola Makaveli manner rather than in-ring action. In fact, as we draw closer to the Olympics, boxing in the purest form, we see little to no enthusiasm for the contest, as bizarrely heavyweight Dillian Whyte potentially fighting in the U.S. is a bigger story to some, if not most. In short, based upon media coverage and topics, the fight themselves seem to be the most uninteresting aspect of the sport, for many at the top, based around the coverage of the sport.
The truth is boxing is no longer a sport really. It is about manipulation, access, and the entertainment around it, more so the last statement. The fights the fans want to see, often takes too long to make to keep them occupied or excited around the sport itself, so the entertainment now comes from the conflict between fighters on social media, and other fans. The leading journalist now makes content that appeals to this, as sources, and breaking news is more interesting to many than assessments on the fight, add in fantasy fights, and we have a modern era, in which most of our current great fighters are not really getting much unique coverage or stories being told about them.
Why is that?
The sport is on the back pages of all major publications. We’re not a dead sport, but a sport that isn’t viewed as serious, so the regulation of the rules and parameters, along with social norms have just come down to website views as well as influence, and who a promoter sees fit as a professional or capable of giving adequate coverage.
Boxing content alone seems increasingly hard to be able to get by with a steady income, as many are pivoting to a fan perspective to get fans more engaged. Boxing is the only sport I know of in which the journalist have trouble separating their fandom from the sport itself. Not unlike anything, people just want to stand out now, and that leads to the mess we’re in – which is the assumption that Tyson Fury vs. Deontay Wilder III is off on July 24th, on PPV, which it may or may not be, but nothing has been officially confirmed on record.
Now it could be, but I just want the promoter, Top Rank Inc, who has a ton of very wealthy people in charge as well as Frank Warren and Premier Boxing Champions, to give an official statement, as I keep saying. It is fun to debate this, that, and a third, but I want to see industry leaders, voice their opinion who have money at stake in the fight, before I weigh in. The silence of the matter is the most interesting part, and I always taught when silence fills a room, let the silence breathe and a deeper conversation may ensue.
It is becoming far too common that media is being weaponized, at the behest of whoever leaks the information, to point a certain picture, which is clouding the genuine truth of the matter. I am not a journalist, but it makes me fear, where we’re going when an astute mind could see this trend, and now use it to their favor, time and time again.
The biggest problem with boxing right now is the fans for the large part don’t feel like their voices are being heard, so they’re making blogs like my own, or going to YouTube and making content. The deeper truth is, a lot of fans are bringing forth better points than those of the egotistical salary boxing writers, who are skilled in the craft but might have lost touch or even detest the modern era of technology, and society. As for so long, writers on big platforms, spoke and you had to listen, message boards were talked down upon, as less than, now we’re seeing the fans unite, and building up platforms, they believe in, and not looking to proven writers.
What is the true issue with that? Group-think.
Now we have no safeguards and few with ethics, as oftentimes, those covering the sport of boxing are fans, who just love it, who have no intention of separating their fandom from coverage. Great writers, like Mike Baca, and many others, have essentially moved on from boxing, because they’re too talented, they can make money elsewhere. Even the industry standard, Greg Bishop is now taking on a more behind-the-scenes role, and even worse high-profile writers are often mocking fans, who probably are surprised they’re even talking to them.
All of this, because people always want to be right, and never want to listen, on all sides. Boxing is the one sport, in which we are drawn to it because we love conflict. Yet, love is the thing to tears us apart.
I understand the need to notify, Fury and Wilder fans that the fight might be off, but where is the concern for the fighters themselves, if sick, or the fighters who may or may not get paid on the undercard. The whole thing is yet, another reason boxing is in the place it is, rush things together, with no deep inspection of substance or introspection.
The consumption of boxing news, further feels like a steady diet of fast-food rather than a five-course meal.