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HBO President Rips Sports Illustrated for Lack of Boxing Coverage

Last we checked up on boxing, other than to present you the news of Old Field’s 9th loss, I was sharing with you Unsilent Majority’s great piece on the sports media burying boxing. UM’s premise was simple: Boxing is alive and well, you just wouldn’t know it because places like ESPN have it low on their agenda. Well, Unsilent isn’t the only person who feels that way. While I was handling business the other day, I read an interesting letter to the editor in Sports Illustrated that caught my attention. Here’s what it said:

I am getting a little tired of your using the “save boxing” story line every time you guys decide to cover the sport, as you did in your story on Kelly Pavlik. If boxing is dying, why did our 24/7 De La Hoya-Mayweather reality series average 4.7 million viewers a week over a four-week period? And how did the fight itself do 2.4 million buys? If boxing is dying, why is the anticipation for Calzaghe vs. Kessler, Cotto vs. Mosley, and Mayweather vs. Hatton so great? I think magazines and newspapers that characterize boxing as dying are trying to rationalize their stubbornness in not covering the sport. Boxing fans are out there in millions. You and others are just not serving their needs. We are.

Ross Greenburg, President, HBO Sports

That letter was so well put, I could not have said it better myself. Greenburg completely hit the nail on the head. And I have to give SI credit for not being too embarrassed to publish such a harsh letter; it’s not easy to not only take that type of criticism, but put it on display for millions of readers.



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  • SpinMax

    “If boxing is dying, why is the anticipation for Calzaghe vs. Kessler, Cotto vs. Mosley, and Mayweather vs. Hatton so great?”

    first I’ve even heard most of those names cept for mayweather-mosley.

  • http://svpstyle.com ScottVanPeltStyle.com

    Worked out well for them.

    SI gives the impression they give a damn about editorial balance, and boxing takes another gasp of air from drowning in the lack of heavyweight star power.

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  • Gene

    Boxing will be a lot healthier when:

    It gets rid of all of the minor alphabet groups;

    The remaining two or three groups actually recognize the champions of the other groups as top contenders for their belts instead of considering them nonexistent as boxers;

    The heavyweight division makes a comeback and has one great champion who unifies the title.

  • http://www.larrybrownsports.com Larry Brown

    Well, even with all the current problems in the sport, should every fight be considered a fight to save the sport?

  • Ray Salem

    Boxing is not dying and tha was a great letter. I cancelled my subscription because of lack of boing coverage. Boxing is stronger than ever, and alive. Long Live the sweet science.