The September 19 bout between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Juan Manuel Marquez is approaching fast, and with direct competition coming from UFC 103, it looks like the promoters -- namely Mayweather, his business partner Leonard Ellerbe and Golden Boy Promotions -- are looking for creative ways to hook viewers.
Today, it was announced that the fight will be shown in over 170 movie theaters nationwide.
"The young audience, they don't want to stay at home. They don't want to go to a bar," said Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, who struck the arrangement with National Cinema Media Fathom and insists this move will not hurt pay-per-view sales. "This is going to open up the sport of boxing to a new and young audience."
I really don't think this is going to open up the sport of boxing to a new and young audience, and in fact I think that's borderline insane. People need to be firmly aware of the sport before they're going to spend $12.50 to $15 to see it in a theater. The problem is not that the fights haven't been in theaters or that "young people don't want to stay at home or go to a bar," it's that the fights have been promoted poorly in many cases for years now.
I hope it's a success, but I don't see this doing a whole lot. If you're interested, theater tickets for the fight can be purchased from Fathom Events.