Bob Arum furious with MGM over posters, says it’s Tecate-Corona issue
The boxing promoter is 82 years old and always seems to be complaining about something. His latest issue leading up to the Saturday fight between Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley concerned the signage and posters around the MGM Grand hotel.
The Pacquiao-Bradley fight is being held at the MGM, which is the same hotel where Floyd Mayweather Jr. always fights. Instead of having signs up promoting this big fight, there were a ton of signs up around the hotel promoting Mayweather’s May 3 fight with Marcos Maidana.
— Ryan Songalia (@ryansongalia) April 9, 2014
— Kevin Iole (@KevinI) April 10, 2014
Posters of Pacquiao-Bradley and Mayweather-Maidana fights both hang at MGM Grand. Bob Arum cries foul. pic.twitter.com/51Kup0IO6X
— Queenie Dimapawi (@inangreina) April 12, 2014
— LaceupBoxing (@LaceUpBoxing) April 10, 2014
The MGM listened to the complaints and said they would address things. There was a lot more Pacquiao-Bradley signage after he whined:
— Carlos Trillo (@Productrillus) April 10, 2014
Arum was ticked about it and encouraged Filipino fans to boycott the hotel.
“I am very angry,” Arum said during the week via The Telegraph. “MGM ought to be ashamed of themselves. They invited us in here, they wanted us to do an event, we’re practically done selling tickets and all over this facility they’re putting up signs for a Mayweather fight.
“And they justify it because he can’t sell a ticket because nobody wants to buy tickets for a fight that is pre-ordained as a 15-1 fight. So, as far as I’m concerned, the MGM can stuff it. We’re not coming back here.
“We’re not doing any more fights here. It’s a reason why other American gaming companies like the Sands, the Wynn far exceed the MGM which struggles to pay its debts because there is no leadership here. They don’t know what they’re doing.
“To have people who are in the hotel who should be supporting us and working with us advertising another fight is absolutely unconscionable. But there will be a comeuppance. I guarantee it.”
Arum specifically told Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole that he was considering suing the MGM over the issue. He also told Iole that one of the big problems is that his main fight sponsor — Tecate — is getting a raw deal. Tecate, which is a Mexican beer, is a big sponsor of the Pacquiao-Bradley fight. Corona, which is a rival Mexican beer, is the sponsor of the Mayweather-Maidana fight. So Corona is receiving plenty of exposure when Arum believes Tecate should be receiving it. It’s a very fair point, but unless the signage is clearly discussed in the fight contract, then there’s not much Top Rank can do about it.
Showtime executive Stephen Espinoza, who frequently works with rival boxing promotion Golden Boy, suggested on Twitter that Arum might have been bitter over his car being hit at the hotel and towed away:
Wonder if Arum's rant had anything to do with the fact that someone hit (& possibly totaled) his car at MGM. Had to be towed away.
— Stephen Espinoza (@StephenEspinoza) April 10, 2014
Arum doesn’t have the best tact with complaining about his issues, but he does have a very fair point. This is just a poor way of doing business by the MGM. The Pacquiao fight is a big enough one where it should be receiving some top billing when it’s the week of the fight. That should have been addressed. The only problem is Floyd Mayweather is the top dog at the MGM and the hotel will probably always cater to him. Arum should have known that and taken his business somewhere else.