Bob Arum Close To Bringing Live Boxing Back
By: Hans Themistode
Individuals around the world are still coming to grips with the restrictions placed on them due to COVID-19. Boxing, along with just about every other sport, has been put on pause for several months. But now, after putting together a plan, promoter Bob Arum seems to be well on his way to staging fights once again.
“Only in Nevada at this point without fans,” said Arum. “A place like Nevada with all the hotel rooms makes it much easier to quarantine the fighters and control the situation unlike New York.”
Arum has the good fortune of having a large stable of fighters at his disposal. Names such as Josue Vargas and Edgar Berlanga, although very talented, don’t command enormous crowds when they fight as they are only in the infancy stages of their careers.
Setting up fights for his lower ranked stars without crowds in attendance shouldn’t be too much of a hassle, but his bigger name fighters need a larger platform then what COVID-19 is allowing.
Giving them that aforementioned platform might be close to impossible in the United States. But outside of the country is another story entirely.
“Crawford needs a gate,” Arum said. “We’re talking to a couple countries about getting him a big fight. We are working on Crawford vs. Manny Pacquiao at the moment.
“While the gate is very important, it’s not as important for some fights as it is for things like Fury-Wilder III. One of the proposals for (Fury-Wilder 3) is Macao but we also have one being discussed in Australia.”
Arum has to start somewhere. And he’ll be looking to take his first steps back into live boxing this coming June at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“Once we get those fights in and UFC gets its initial fights in, both of us will ask for additional dates,” Arum told The Associated Press. “The key was getting enough testing. Now, we’ve got plenty of testing in Nevada to hold our events.”
In terms of who could be on these upcoming shows, Arum has let the cat out of the bag. Before this worldwide pandemic started, Arum was forced to cancel several shows. Now, those fighters who were forced to the sidelines could see themselves amongst the first group back in action.
“These will be the same guys we were going to have before to the extent possible. Guys like (Olympic medalist) Shakur Stevenson and others who would have been fighting on our cards.”