SBD/Issue 2/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Golden Boy, Affliction Agree To Boxing/MMA Partnership

Schaefer Feels Tremendous Opportunities For
Cross-Promotion Between Boxing, MMA 
Golden Boy Promotions and MMA promoter Affliction "will partner 50-50 on at least four [PPV] shows next year that will include boxing matches and MMA fights on the same card," according to Dan Rafael of ESPN.com. Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer: "There are some tremendous opportunities for crossover promotions and to team up with an iconic brand such as Affliction is a big step for us." Affliction VP Tom Atencio: "We're looking to put together top MMA fighters as well as top boxers in one night. I think the two worlds have finally merged." Rafael reported as part of the deal, Affliction "will produce a line of event T-shirts for Golden Boy fights to sell at retail locations and at the fight." The shirts will first be available for the December 6 Oscar De La Hoya-Manny Pacquiao fight. Affliction's October 11 PPV event in Las Vegas was postponed "because of lagging ticket sales." The event's main event was supposed to be Andrei Arlovski-Josh Barnett, and Golden Boy "attempted to have Arlovski-Barnett rescheduled as part of the Oct. 18 [Kelly Pavlik-Bernard Hopkins] HBO PPV card." However, co-promoter Top Rank and HBO "rejected the overture" (ESPN.com, 9/13).

LOOKING FOR THE RIGHT FIT: Schaefer said of the deal, "It took us a while because we wanted to to do it right. We're not people who like to jump. I like to educate myself a bit about it to understand the competition and I like to understand the whole space." Schaefer also "envisions MMA's coveted younger male audience replenishing the ranks of boxing's aging fan base." Schaefer: "We believe Affliction and the relationships they have with that demographic, the identification they have within that demographic group I think will help bring boxing to these people." Atencio added, "If we can bring that fan over, the hardcore boxing fan who is a little bit older, then I think it brings another demographic to MMA" (SI.com, 9/14). SHERDOG.com's Mike Sloan wrote the partnership "does not come as much of a surprise." Since De La Hoya, his PR staff and Schaefer "have hinted ... on numerous occasions that promoting MMA was 'a possibility,' it was a matter of when, not if it would happen" (SHERDOG.com, 9/13).

Return to top
Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug