The Neutral Corner: Episode 256 Recap (Jim Boone of KO Tickets joins; Triller crashes the party, Canelo destroys Yildirim)
On episode 256 of The Neutral Corner boxing podcast, host Michael Montero was joined by ticket broker Jim Boone of KOtickets.com. They discussed the current landscape of boxing in America and how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the ticket market, particularly in Las Vegas.
“Vegas has always been good for me”, he told The Ring. “I’ve had an office in Vegas for over 20 years. It’s a very big part of my business, I just don’t know if the city is ready (for big shows) yet. Promoters are in a very difficult spot there. I don’t know what they’re going to do in Nevada, but we know that Florida and Texas are open for business.”
Boone feels there are big opportunities for Texas and Florida to land big shows this year. He also believes there is a strong chance for the May 8 super middleweight unification fight between Canelo Alvarez and Billy Joe Saunders to end up in Miami.
“It seems to me that maybe the Canelo-Yildirim fight was a market tester for future shows in Miami,” he said. “For some reason in America, there is this notion that Miami is a bad fight market. If you put on a big sporting event in Miami, it becomes a prime time city (11 Super Bowls have taken place in the area). If you put a big show there, trust me, everyone is going to go.”
“If they put the Canelo-Saunders fight in Miami, can you imagine the British fans there? You will see an explosive scene that is going to be a lot of fun. The city will deliver. It’s cheap to go there and it has a bunch of hotels, a bunch of restaurants. So I don’t know what the plan is for May 8, but if they do go back to Miami, I’m not complaining.”
There were two major fight cards in the USA on Saturday, February 27.
In Los Angeles, Anthony Dirrell and Kyrone Davis fought to a split draw in a super middleweight title eliminator. The fight, which most felt Dirrell did enough to win, headlined a PBC on Fox card.
In Miami, Canelo Alvarez dominated mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim, who retired on his stool before the start of the fourth round. After the fight, promoter Eddie Hearn announced Canelo’s next fight would be May 8 against Billy Joe Saunders. The fight, venue TBA, will unify all but one of the major super middleweight titles. On the undercard, McWilliams Arroyo won an interim flyweight title, heavyweights Zhilei Zhang and Jerry Forrest fought to a draw, 168-pound prospect Diego Pacheco remained undefeated with points win, and American lightweight amateur standout Keyshawn Davis won his pro debut.
Thursday, March 4
360 Promotions, NBC Sports Network
Municipal Boxing Gym Felix Pagán Pintor, Guaynabo, Puerto Rico
Serhii Bohachuk vs Brandon Adams, 10rds, 160 pounds
Friday, March 5
Salita Promotions, PPV
Dort Federal Event Center, Flint, MI
Claressa Shields vs Marie Eve Dicaire, 10rds, undisputed junior middleweight championship
QUOTES FROM THE CALLERS:
Jack Alter feels that Dmitry Bivol could beat Canelo Alvarez. “I don’t think Canelo wants that fight,” he said. “If Dmitry Bivol moves down to 168-pounds, I don’t think Canelo can beat him. If they fought, I think it would look similar to the first 10 rounds of the Kovalev bout, except Bivol would be throwing harder punches.”
Duane from Rochester, New York, called to settle an argument between himself and a friend who feels that Canelo Alvarez rates higher all-time than Oscar De La Hoya. “Oscar was a great fighter,” he said. “I really don’t think people give him enough respect, who he fought and when he fought them. When he fought Ike Quartey for example, Ike was a beast and De La Hoya didn’t have to fight him. He fought Sugar Shane Mosley at his peak.”
E’san Brodi, cousin of middleweight titleholder Demetrius Andrade, took issue with recent comments from Ak and Barak of DAZN. During the Canelo-Yildirim broadcast, they claimed Alvarez was already the greatest Mexican fighter of all-time. He also enjoyed the back and forth on Twitter between Vasiliy Lomachenko and Devin Haney, who he would love to see step up his opposition. “It’s just the worst,” he said. “He’s got the kind of crowd around him that’s hyping him up without really proving himself.”
Thad feels that it was hypocritical for Canelo Alvarez to fight Avni Yildirim, his WBC 168-pound challenger, when he hasn’t always been willing to face mandatories in the past. “After Canelo beat Miguel Cotto, he was mandated to fight Gennady Golovkin next by the WBC,” he said. “He said no and he dumped the belt. Fast forward to this month with Yildirim. His last win (in September 2018) was against a fighter with 14 losses. This mandatory was set up previously by Al Haymon for his fighter David Benavidez, who had the WBC title but lost it on the scale. Once again, Canelo inherited this mandatory. But unlike with GGG, he had no problem facing Yildirim. This is a bad look from Canelo.”
@2:10 interview with Jim Boone of KO Tickets
@1:14:28 Triller wins Lopez-Kambosos purse bid
@1:42:10 Fight Review
@1:48:30 Fight Preview
Michael Montero can be found on social media via @MonteroOnBoxing. His podcast “The Neutral Corner” can be seen every Monday on TheRingDigital YouTube channel, and heard on audio podcast platforms around the world.