Frank Warren believes that his UK promotional rival, Eddie Hearn, is seeing his fighters leave the stable due to a lack of exposure.
The veteran promoter spoke to Seconds Out about the domestic landscape of boxing business, believing his work to have outperformed the rest in 2022.
“Do you know how many young guys have come on the scene over the years and how many have disappeared over the years? This business is about [longevity].”
“It’s about what happens in the ring, what you put in the ring that counts – and this year we’ve outdone everybody in the UK. And I think it’s going to be even better next year because we’ve got more control of what we’ve got to do.”
There are three major promotional players in the UK that are consistently vying for the attention of fans.
Hearn’s Matchroom, broadcast on DAZN, Warren’s Queensberry on BT Sport, and Ben Shalom’s Boxxer who partnered with Sky Sports following Matchroom’s decision to leave.
Warren believes that it was a poor decision by Hearn in terms of his fighters’ profiles.
Sky now have got a new promoter [Ben Shalom] – we’ll see now what he does over the next year or two years … the others, all I keep seeing is fighters are leaving them at the moment. And there’s a reason for that – they’re not getting that exposure. You go on Dead Zone, you don’t get seen.”
Most recently, world cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie expressed an interest to leave Matchroom and has now seemingly teamed up with Boxxer for his next fight.
Finally, Warren offered a sort-of compliment to Hearn, before again questioning DAZN’s standing in the sport.
“He’s had a good run. He hit the ground running obviously through Matchroom and having a TV deal with Sky … but let’s see what happens in the next year. At the moment DAZN is being funded by a man who’s blown, I think, about 6 billion in setting the business up and it’s not making money. They announced profits.
So if I was him I’d be sitting there saying ‘I’m putting all this money in and everyone else is making profits – why ain’t I making profits?’ How long’s he going to continue putting money in? Who knows.”
With more competition than ever, UK fans can expect another bumper year for boxing with show clashes and purse bids aplenty.