Mickey Bey and Tevin Farmer will meet in a unique setup in Dubai on May 21
Mickey Bey once held the IBF lightweight title. Tevin Farmer once held the IBF junior lightweight title. Bey hasn’t fought since he dropped a split-decision to current lightweight world champion George Kambosos in 2019. Farmer hasn’t fought since he lost the IBF junior lightweight belt to Jo Jo Diaz in 2020.
So, naturally, since the pair don’t have dance partners lining up to fight either of them, they decided on their own to fight each other, a 10-round lightweight bout on May 21 at the Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai.
What’s unique is that Bey (23-3-1, 11 knockouts) and Farmer (30-5-1, 6 KOs) set this up themselves. They cut out, for the most part, the middlemen.
Bey, 38, knows the end is near. What this fight may do is set up where the next phase of his life heads. If he wins, he feels, he’s still a viable 135-pounder. If he losses, he can segue right into where his future may be as a trainer and fight promoter.
“This would be so good of a win for me, and I’ll surprise people with how good I look, because I take care of myself, but if I win, I would fight two, three more times at the most,” said Bey, who has worked with and trained Devin Haney. “Tevin and I are showing everybody fights can be made. Every fighter needs to think about what they’re going to do after their careers are over.
“Enough fighters don’t do that. That’s the lane I really want to be in after my career is over, on the promotional side of things or in an advisory lane and help fighters out on that end, more so than even training. I think a lot of fighters out there across the world need help on getting better counsel when it comes to making the right decisions.”
Bey and Farmer made this fight after it came up on social media from former lightweight world champion Teofimo Lopez, who thought Farmer should fight Haney. Bey thought Haney was too much for Farmer, but he volunteered himself to fight Farmer. Bey wound up getting in touch with one of Farmer’s people, they began talking, and through some contacts in Ghana, got a venue and made pay-per-view available at FarmervsBeyPPV.com.
“I have friends in different places and we actually Coca-Cola as one of our sponsors, and we’re all investing in it,” Bey said. “We got a couple of other sponsors involved, too, now. This could be a move made towards the future. I’m willing to work with anyone. It’s a small PPV ($25.99) and maybe we can start out something new. Who knows what fighters can do when they speak up?
“I’m a focused person. I get my training in and run my businesses here in Las Vegas. We’re getting help on the side. This is borderline crazy. I’m almost 39 and come back and beat Farmer. Tevin needs this fight as well. We just added (former WBO junior featherweight titlist) Isaac Dogboe to the card. Let’s what happens here.”
The day before the fight will be a concert.
Bey had one set of grandparents grow up with Don King. His other grandparents grew up with Al Haymon. Those two men are Bey’s inspiration.
“Boxing is the best worldwide sport there is and it just needs a few tweaks to get right back up there again,” Bey said. “Tevin and I created this. I want to spread idea everywhere. We need to get the younger fighters on the same page. We can make sure we give the fans a bang for the buck.”
Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter who has been working for Ring Magazine/RingTV.com since October 1997 and is the president of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be followed on twitter @JSantoliquito.