By: Dylan Smith
DAZN (Pronounced ‘Da-Zone’)
You may or may not have heard of them but here they are.
Although they are going to be a multi sport platform, their first phase is heavily focused on boxing and fight sports. The reason for that is they believe fight fans in the U.S have been underserved for too long. Their approach is to bring premium boxing content to fans at a fraction of the price of other channels on cable and such. Giving you full access to all of their content of live shows, archive shows, original programming, behind the scenes features and other sports all on one platform.
So if you are a boxing fanatic but tend to dip your toe into the occasional cage fight then you can have access to the MMA organisation Bellator and their shows too. This is their promise: They aren’t going to stash their best shows for pay per view, they aren’t going to distribute externally on linear channels and they won’t package higher cost subscription packages above and beyond $9.99. It’s all in one place and it’s their entire content portfolio at a single affordable price, ‘created by fans for fans’.
What does this actually mean for fans then who are in the right country at the right time? It means you’re going to get ‘pay per view shows’ at a fraction of the price you are used to paying, some of which have charged up to $100. With no binding contract and on a pay as you go basis. So what does this mean for those of us not lucky enough to live in the U.S or other countries that are within the broadcasting cache.
Sky sports have an exclusive deal with Matchroom boxing and Eddie Hearn has secured the DAZN shows to be aired on sky sports. So for all you lucky paying subscribers that means 16 extra fight cards over the year. Launching their first show in Chicago on October 6th with an impressive line up of fighters, 4 of which are world title bouts. DAZN are pushing into the market and carving their way into history as they create original content.
In their recent press conference heavyweight boxer Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller comically confused the name DAZN for Calzone pizza. Although the newly formed heavily financially backed company do have a lot of ‘dough’ they really are trying to be the big cheese.
So is there enough room for them in the existing market, enough audience to give them a return for their investment? Or are they just going to burn out like a Roman candle with their ‘overpaying’ of fighters and short term heavy investment? The saying is you have to speculate to accumulate. So if they can create original content and then archive for years to come at least they will have something to offer subscribers.
The key here is creation of content. Or the fights being made for all of us fight fans to enjoy. The fights that may have not been made but only through lucrative purses to tempt fighters and promoters to work with one another. Enough pay to prohibit politics and for the boxers to have a massive opportunity for a career high pay day. Like in the case of Frank Warren’s fighter Billy Joe Saunders defending his WBO World middleweight title against Demetrius Andrade on October the 20th on DAZN. More investment, more competition can only therefore give us lovers of the sport more entertainment and better value. I look forward to the shows and seeing how they will change the landscape of boxing if any change at all.