Lou DiBella does not have a stable of boxers nearly as deep as either Golden Boy or Top Rank. However, he and other promoters of similar depth may find a way to benefit from the Cold War taking place between those two promotional giants. With HBO refusing to do business with Golden Boy and Showtime essentially giving the same treatment to Top Rank, the expectation for smaller companies is that more dates could open up that would have otherwise been spent on the promotional company that is now banned. At least that's the hope. With the promotional giants just tied to one major premium cable network apiece, it could also cause them to swallow even more dates at their respective network. Like a lot of things, time will tell.
Boxing Scene's Rick Reeno recently (Alliteration!) sat down with DiBella to discuss his thoughts on the feud between Golden Boy and Top Rank, and how it may impact his company.
"If they have the right opportunity for my fighter, I want Schaefer and (Showtime Sports head Stephen) Espinoza to know that I'm happy to do business with them too. Right now I'm doing business with HBO because that's who is calling me for fights and I'm going to give them the best product and the best spectacles.
"I'm not going to sit there and shit on Schaefer. I don't give a fuck about him fighting with HBO. I'm not in the business of shitting on Showtime. You will not read any quotes from me shitting on Schaefer. I just want people to understand that I am fucking Switzerland. I just want the best opportunities for my fighters and the one thing that I have always been able to do throughout my career is do business with anybody and that's what I plan to do in this fucking environment.
"All this stuff with pissing contests and wars - I'm out. Life is too fucking short. I just want to do business. So Richard, I have guys who line up well with your guys. If you want to make a fucking deal, call me. HBO, you're actually calling me now to make fight cards. You're calling me now to make fights for you. So guess what? I'm going to make the best fucking cards I can for HBO. That being said, a lot of my guys factor in with Showtime's fighters, and Golden Boy's fighters and Al Haymon's fighters - and I don't have a problem doing business there. If Stephen ever wanted to call me, I'll all ears. If they are really willing to buy something from me, I'm happy to sell it."
DiBella has always been one of my favorite interviews, and this is him in his unedited glory. Reeno also says in the article that DiBella began to sing John Lennon's "Give Peace A Chance" at one point in the interview.
Promoters like DiBella, Goosen-Tutor, Main Events, and Gary Shaw have the luxury of being able to negotiate with both networks, HBO and Showtime, which could offer their fighters some major opportunities in the near-future. Though, as mentioned earlier, it does remain to be seen if the larger promotional companies take up more dates due to being stuck with just one network. Will HBO and Showtime simply bend over backwards to please the giants or allow everyone a chance?