Bob Arum ponders a Terence Crawford-Conor McGregor boxing/MMA two-fight deal
Bob Arum is never shy, and as per usual spoke his mind when on Tuesday he hit the Everlast TALKBOX podcast, riffing on current events in the boxing sphere.
The 88 year old Brooklyn born bossman of the Top Rank corp. broke a bit of news, sharing that he will talk to Dana White, the UFC chief, about matching his welterweight ace Terence Crawford with MMAer Conor McGregor. Two fights, Arum said, one in the ring, and one in the Octagon.
“Once MMA rules, and once boxing rules,” he said on the podcast. “Crawford has a background in wrestling and would not be adverse in fighting McGregor using UFC rules.” Bud, he believes, is FAR more likely to agree to engage inside the Octagon, more so than Floyd Mayweather and/or Manny Pacquiao, both seemingly pursuing a boxer vs MMAer collision with the “athlebrity” McGregor.
Arum said he heard McGregor did close to a million buys on ESPN+, for his scrap Saturday against Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone. “That’s pretty damn good,” said Arum, nodding in appreciation at the efforts of his sometimes rival White. (Yes, those two have went at it, fierce as all hell…but the fight game is known for how one days’ enemies can be the next days’ bed-mates, if there is massive revenue to generate, to help stamp out a feud.)
But of course, Arum spoke on that forthcoming event, the Feb. 22 rematch between Tyson Fury, the so-called Gypsy King, versus WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder. Wilder has promised he will finish the job started Dec. 2018 when he knocked Fury to the mat twice in their first tango, while Fury is saying that this time, he will sit down on his punches and not be the artful dodger at the MGM.
You may have heard that Fury is trying something new to bolster his training camp; seven times per day, Fury says, he engages in the act of onanism. That boosts his testosterone level, he contends.
“Tell him his promoter envies him, I wish I could, I can’t do that anymore,” the promoter said when informed of the wacky boast from the 31 year old.
OK, that goofiness aside, what about that trainer switch? Moving off from Ben Davison, to Sugar Hill Steward…what about that move? “I think that Tyson understands that Ben was very good for him, and got him in decent shape, but Ben didn’t have the gravitas, as far as being a sophisticated trainer. And Sugar Hill learned at the feet of Emanuel Steward. And I see great improvements in Tyson Fury, he trains in my gym, much, much more sophisticated style.”
Arum shared that the heavyweight sequel will be offered on several platforms, including ESPN+, and he is looking for around 2 million homes hitting the buy button.
And what will it cost to watch it? “Yeah, I believe it’s $80, and that was done in consultation with all the providers. We were fooling around with a lesser price but they said no, with the power of this event, $79.95 was the appropriate price.”
And Fury has spoken of not being so evasive, and sitting down on his shots. Good idea? “Tyson Fury is Tyson Fury, it’s his game plan, and I don’t interfere with that. I know he’s being much more aggressive in sparring, whether that translates to much more aggression in the ring, we’ll have to see. But he is appreciably different in training for this fight, than the last two…More intense, but different. This is more traditional kind of training than we saw in the last two we promoted (versus Tom Schwarz and Otto Wallin.)”
To hear more on the Everlast Talkbox podcast from Arum, as well as super welterweight prospect Charles Conwell, discussing his first fight back after the fateful clash with Patrick Day, click here.