Tuesday, August 16, 2022  |


Berto-Mosley, Hopkins-Adamek hit bumps


Two fights in the works — Shane Mosley vs. Andre Berto and Bernard Hopkins vs. Tomasz Adamek — face serious obstacles.

Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions, which handles Mosley and Hopkins, had productive meetings with counterparts Lou DiBella (Berto) and Kathy Duva (Adamek) last week in New York. The parties more or less agreed on how to split the pots.

The problem is the pots. The promoters said that HBO, which would televise the fights, is not offering big enough licensing fees to satisfy the fighters.

Schaefer is asking the network to reconsider and is expecting a response soon.

“We’ll see what they can do,” Schaefer said. “Maybe they’ll increase their offer a bit.”

Another obstacle is a proposed fight between Adamek, THE RING cruiserweight champion, and heavyweight Andrew Golota in their native Poland in October. Even if enough money were on the table, Golden Boy wouldn’t agree to Hopkins vs. Adamek if Adamek goes through with the Golota fight.

“Bernard won’t wait around and run the risk of an injury (to Adamek) or things like that,” Schaefer said. “HBO wouldn’t do it, either. That would eliminate any possibility.”

However, Duva said she's in a difficult position. She would rather Adamek fight Hopkins because he'd earn more money but is hesitant to reject a solid offer – Adamek vs. Golota – and then hope that HBO decides to come up with more money. In the end, Adamek could be left with neither fight.

“See my dilemma?” she said. “We’re being asked to pass on a fight without knowing what’s going to happen with Hopkins. I haven’t given up but to pass on a sure thing for a pretty sure thing ÔǪ I don’t know.

“I’ll meet with Adamek and explain all this to him and see how he feels, then go back to Richard.”

Meanwhile, DiBella wasn’t very optimistic about Mosley vs. Berto.

The former HBO executive confirmed that the network would have to make the pot bigger but said that might be difficult with other big fights on the horizon, including Kelly Pavlik vs. Paul Williams (in the works) and Vitali Klitschko vs. Chris Arreola (already made).

“I doubt it will happen unless some money is freed up,” he said. “I think something else [another fight] would have to fall out. HBO tried hard and in good faith to make a fight, the same way it’s trying to make Pavlik and Williams and made Arreola-Klitschko.

“You can’t make money fall out of trees. If you’re limited by a budget, you’re limited by a budget.”

Schaefer has said that HBO might aid in negotiations if it were at least more consistent with its licensing fees.

He said the pots vary widely even when all involved are marquee fighters, which tends to leave fighters who earn less than their counterparts feeling as if they’re being cheated somehow.

This wouldn’t be a problem if the figures remained confidential but they invariably leak out.

“It makes it extremely difficult when license fees are publicly known,” he said. “Other fighters see that one fighter is being paid so much for a big fight. That creates a problem. I’ve tried to explain to HBO how difficult it is for promoters to go to their fighters and say this is how much we're willing to pay even though we were willing to pay that much more for another fight.

“Pavlik-Williams, Berto-Mosley, Hopkins-Adamek, Klitschko-Arreola ÔǪ these are all A-level fights. It should be a set fee. Bang. No ifs ands or buts. When you end up with different amounts, it creates ill will.”

Schaefer said that another option for Hopkins is the winner of the Chad Dawson-Glen Johnson fight on Nov. 7, however that would preclude a fight in January.

The promoter had hoped Hopkins next fight would take place around his 45th birthday, on Jan. 15.

Michael Rosenthal can be reached at [email protected]