Potential PBC-Amazon Prime Deal: The Hidden Dangers For Boxers
A potential deal between PBC and Amazon Prime could have a huge impact on the boxing scene following reports by Ariel Helwani that a deal is very close.
Following Showtime’s decision to pull out of boxing at the end of the year, the stable of fighters under the PBC banner has been left with an uncertain future. The existence of Showtime PPV allowed boxers to be built up slowly in the hope of then becoming PPV stars.
Canelo Alvarez is one such example, having fought on Floyd Mayweather’s undercard against Shane Mosley, which then allowed the Mexican to face Mayweather in a lucrative fight. Thereafter, Alvarez became one of the biggest stars in boxing, making $50 million in his last fight against Jermell Charlo. However, a deal with Amazon Prime could impact fighters in the following ways.
Boxers may not get paid as much due to the absence of guaranteed purses for the biggest fights. Given that Amazon Prime does operate on a subscription basis, with a user base of 167 million in the US, fighters may not be able to command inflated purses that they otherwise would have. After all, Showtime no longer became sustainable, with an increasing number of PPVs being offered at around $80 for the biggest fights. However, any new deal may result in fighters getting pay cuts.
That could open up the way for fighters to leave PBC and pursue deals elsewhere. The introduction of Saudi Arabia into boxing has increased the chances of the biggest fights being made. And that has resulted in higher purses for fighters, as shown by Tyson Fury and Francis Ngannou getting the highest paydays of their careers. That will have the impact of fighters chasing unrealistic demands and over-inflating their worth, or it could result in more fighters becoming inactive with the competition for the biggest paydays increasing.
“That could happen [PBC fighters going over to DAZN], but Al Haymon isn’t talking about going out of business, obviously. Premier Boxing Champions were on Showtime. That was their home for several years, but there is talk of Amazon, Netflix, these guys. If they sign one of those big deals, I could see the fighters staying with them, but Bob Arum and Top Rank and ESPN are a very powerful force over there as well. So you could see them going there. It will all come down to business deal, and what’s in it for them and how they project a number of fights and who they’re fighting, and how the beans count up at the end,” Gareth. A. Davies said
“My take on Amazon. If they do want to get into boxing, don’t do an exclusive deal with anybody. I think exclusive deals have been a major problem in boxing over the years because it has shrunk the pool for available fights and available shows. If they say they have 200 million dollars a year on boxing, hire somebody to oversee that and say, ‘Look, you’re a promoter, and you want to do fights on our streaming service, pitch the fight. Don’t give me bad fights just because we have to provide you with 10, 12, 14 fights.’ That doesn’t work. It’s proven it doesn’t work. I think Amazon has an opportunity because they can afford to throw a couple of millions at boxing and do some good things, do some big things,” Chris Mannix stated
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