Boxing News At Five

Boxing News at Five: Oscar De La Hoya for President, Warren aligns with Top Rank and ESPN, and Davies is “a fighter, not a clown”

oscar de la hoya
Tom Hogan/Hogan Photos/Golden Boy
It's fight week, so Oscar De La Hoya talks possible presidential run, and Frank Warren has announced a partnership with Top Rank

IF nothing else, Donald Trump has done a wonderful job of making the esteemed position of President of the United States of America seem an accessible and achievable one in the minds of many who would previously, in a pre-Trump era, have considered themselves unqualified or simply unable to carry out the role.

The latest man buoyed by Trump’s lowering of the bar is Oscar De La Hoya, the former six-weight world champion and boxing promoter, who is apparently considering the possibility of launching an audacious – but not as audacious as it should be – presidential bid.

Speaking to TMZ, the 45-year-old said he is putting together an “exploratory team” to gauge interest and, like Kanye West before him, is at least committed to the tease.

“I am actually very, very serious,” he said, “and I strongly feel that if Kanye West can do it and announce and maybe tease the world that he would maybe one day want to run for president, why not me?

“I’ve had literally, over the years, ever since I became a professional in boxing, millions of people tell me, ‘Look, why don’t you represent? Why don’t you stand up and have a bigger voice?’ And obviously, the biggest voice you can have is being president.”

Chasing presidency for the purpose of achieving a big voice is a bit like becoming a professional boxer in order to just throw a punch. It’s a facet of the task, sure, and one of its perks, but it’s also some way short of the complete job specification.

Moreover, while a fantastic fighter in his day, and a true success story in terms of then thriving in retirement, it’s fair to say De La Hoya’s press conferences, of which there’ll be one or two ahead of Golovkin vs. Canelo II this week, hardly motivate one to say, “Yes, Oscar, stand up and have a bigger voice.” Most of the time, in fact, it’s the opposite. “Sit down, Oscar. Take it easy. Smile.”

Then again, when Donald Trump is your predecessor, and a Trump speech is now the barometer, standards aren’t exactly high.

oscar de la hoya

On the subject of sticking to what you’re good at, Ohara Davies has refused to talk trash ahead of an October 6 showdown against Jack Catterall and recently declared his intention to clean up his act and offer fans a more mature, considered ‘Two Tanks’.

“A lot of people seem to think I got here to the big stage because I talk trash,” he said. “Yes, I know how to draw a crowd and I don’t care about getting booed.

“I’ve been quite controversial in the past and people seem to have forgotten I actually know how to fight. My record is good but everyone’s overlooking my successes since the one loss I took.

“Hopefully, the knockout of Paul Kamanga put back in everyone’s minds that I’m a boxer, not a talker. I’m a fighter, not a clown.

“Another misconception is that all I have is my big right hand. I catch people with that shot because I’ve tactically worked out how to do so. Look at my Derry Mathews fight or any of the others – I have other tools and weapons.

“Against Kamanga, I knew the right hand was the shot that would work, but I’m a technical boxer. A lot of people might not see that or think it, but I believe I am.”

The last time Davies approached a highly-anticipated domestic fight against an undefeated Brit he found himself cut down to size in seven rounds against Josh Taylor. Since then, however, Davies, 18-1 (14), has won three on the spin (including a stoppage of another undefeated fighter, Tom Farrell, in six rounds), switched promoters and management teams, and apparently realised the error of his ways. Now 26, the Hackney native seems in a better place and, for once, is saying all the right things.

It remains to be seen whether the new approach continues. And it remains to be seen whether it works out for him in Leicester on October 6.

Ohara Davies

Yesterday wasn’t a good day for Top Rank and ESPN. Today, however, is a slightly better one.

Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions and Top Rank have this afternoon announced an exclusive, landmark multi-year licensing agreement that will bring the events from the United Kingdom and Europe to boxing fans in the United States and Canada.

“We are committed to securing the biggest and best events from around the world,” said Top Rank President Todd duBoef. “Our long-term objective is to showcase global talent and to expose the next generation of boxing stars. Frank Warren is a legend with a keen eye for building talent, and his elite stable has proven to resonate with North American fans.”

“I am absolutely delighted and honoured to announce this landmark multi-year deal with Top Rank that will see my promotions going forward feature regularly on the ESPN platforms in the US and Canada,” said Warren.

“This was a very attractive opportunity to us due to the level of exposure our stable of fighters will benefit from by being showcased by one of, if not the, biggest broadcaster in sport. Boxers like Terence Crawford and Vasiliy Lomachenko appear on ESPN, and our boxers will be sharing a broadcast home with them going forward. The agreement will open doors for them to get their name known coast to coast in North America and eventually become stars there.

“The level of exposure, consistency of events being shown, and our long and valued relationship with Top Rank will ensure this deal will be a huge success for all involved. US boxing fans tuning in on ESPN can look forward to seeing competitive match-ups featuring some of the UK’s finest boxing talent on a regular basis.”

The first show to benefit from this agreement will be the aforementioned October 6 event in Leicester, which features not only Davies vs. Catterall but two-time Olympic gold medallist Nicola Adams going for a WBO interim flyweight title and heavyweight prospect Daniel Dubois stepping up against Kevin Johnson.

Nicola Adams

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