SBD/Issue 124/Facilities & Venues

Arum: Future Of Boxing Is In Hosting Big Fights At Big Stadiums

Pacquiao-Clottey Fight At Cowboys Stadium
Saturday Could Set Precedent For Big Fight Sites

Top Rank Chair Bob Arum yesterday said that the "future of boxing was in big fights in big stadiums," such as Saturday's Manny Pacquiao-Joshua Clottey fight at Cowboys Stadium, according to Bill Dwyre of the L.A. TIMES. Arum also "mentioned Yankee Stadium," which will host the June 5 Yuri Foreman-Miguel Cotto fight, and the new Giants/Jets Meadowlands stadium "as his prototypes, as well as more in Dallas." Arum: "If boxing is to be big league -- and it's not now -- we have to put on these kinds of big events around the world. We can't be big league by putting on the same old casino fights. I look at these Vegas fights and I look ringside and all I see is people from Hong Kong. Nothing but guys from China. You aren't going to grow boxing's brand like that. The casinos don't give a damn about anything other than their customers, and it becomes a circus act." Arum "directed cracks at the Las Vegas casinos, with whom he has been doing business for years, and at the Floyd Mayweather Jr. camp." Arum "implied that he was pretty much out of business with the MGM Grand," saying Golden Boy Promotions is "in bed with MGM." When asked if he worried about upsetting Golden Boy with his comments, Arum, "surrounded by about 10 writers, said, '... Golden Boy.' Fill in your own profanity." Dwyre writes it is "possible that Arum was merely setting the table for the next round of talks, post Pacquiao-Clottey and Mayweather-Mosley fights, for the boxing granddaddy of them all: Pacquiao-Mayweather" (L.A. TIMES, 3/11).

PLANNING AHEAD: In Dallas, Barry Horn reports plans are "in the works to have Cowboys Stadium host its second fight card" this fall during the Cowboys' bye week. Arum said that the card "could include undefeated middleweight Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. ... and Kelly Pavlik, whose only loss has been to Bernard Hopkins" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/11). Meanwhile, Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones yesterday said he wants "all events" at Cowboys Stadium, "any events that will fill seats." Jones: "The Dallas Cowboys only play a set amount of games, but boxing you can do many, many times, and I'm interested in putting as many fights as possible in here. How many? I can't yet say. But we are interested" (LASVEGASSUN.com, 3/10).

WORKING TOGETHER: In Ft. Worth, Tobias Xavier Lopez notes Arum yesterday "thanked UFC president Dana White for throwing his support behind" Pacquiao-Clottey. Arum noted that White "will be in attendance." Arum: "I am of a generation where mixed martial arts is strange to me. I don't particularly care for it, but that's personal taste. I know that they've done a wonderful job promoting it and they're nice people. I think it's good that we're going to help each other" (FT. WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM, 3/11).

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