Al Haymon – Through The Eyes Of His Loyalists
By Sean Crose
There’s one thing that can be said about Al Haymon fighters – they love Al Haymon. Love him. Whether he’s an adviser, manager or even perhaps a promoter, Haymon inspires dedication from his stable the likes of which I have never seen in my four decades of being a fight fan.
Some, of course, find such loyalty to Haymon creepy, or even sinister. Such suspicion is exacerbated by the fact that Haymon fighters arguably tend not to challenge themselves in the ring (just ask anyone who watched this past Saturday’s Danny Garcia-Rod Salka bout).
Since Haymon himself rarely, if ever, talks to the media, I hereby present you with a smorgasbord of what some of his loyalists have had to say about the man. These quotes have been collected from various sources and comprise a veritable chorus of high praise. Give them a read and judge for yourself. Is Al Haymon a terrific guy – or is there something really, really wrong with this picture?
DANNY GARCIA (Light Welterweight Champion):
“I leave it up to Al Haymon.”
“I don’t pick my opponents. My manager, Al Haymon, does, and I never go against him”
“He’s picked all my fights, so I never question him about any decisions.”
“At the end of the day, it’s what Al wants.”
ADONIS STEVENSON (Light Heavyweight Champion)
“I’ve just signed with Al Haymon…this is a great day and I’m going straight to the bank.”
“It is great to know that I have a great adviser representing my future.”
“I don’t think there will be any problems between HBO and Al Haymon.”
RICHARD SCHAEFER (Former CEO, Golden Boy Promotions)
“Al is one of the best people I know and he has done a great job for his clients.”
“You hear fighters being interviewed on TV right after the fight. What do they say? ‘I want to thank God and I want to thank Al Haymon,’ and it’s not always in that order.”
“If you were a father and your son was boxing, who would you want to manage your kid? I’ll tell you what, if it were me, I’d want Al to manage my son.”
“And that is why every boxer in the world wants to have Al Haymon manage them.”
JOHN MOLINA (light welterweight)
“When you’re with Al Haymon there is no need to call anyone out.”
“With Al Haymon, we don’t have to look for anything. It’s there for us.”
“I can’t say enough good things about him. He’s changed my life. He’s more of an advocate for his fighters than a manager.”
“I’m happy with whatever he says.”
Floyd Mayweather (Pound For Pound King Of All Boxing, Highest Paid Athlete On Earth)
“One of the best men I have ever met in my life.”
“Al has done a tremendous job.”
“When it comes to entertainment and sports, you can’t choose a better guy than Al Haymon.”
“If Al Haymon is not on your team, you don’t have the right guy on your team.”
There’s little doubt judging from these quotes that Haymon inspires genuine affection from those he works with. My personal guess is that the man may truly be caring when it comes to his fighters. Having said that, his fighters are, well, fighters. What’s more, boxing is a sport – and in a sport, people are supposed to challenge themselves. There should be a real sense of competition involved. Garcia-Salka provided the fight world with many things to talk about, but the topic of competition wasn’t one of them.
One thing is certain – Mr. Haymon is clearly making some people happy.