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Golden Boy sues Al Haymon for $300M

Golden Boy is suing Al Haymon and his related companies, alleging repeated violation of antitrust laws and the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act

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Wil Esco is an assistant editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2014.

It appears that Oscar De La Hoya is looking to cash-in on May-Pac too! Golden Boy has just filed a $300M lawsuit against Al Haymon and his investors for allegedly violating the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act and other antitrust laws. Really, this was only a matter of time. In the lawsuit, Oscar states that Haymon and his investors "entered into agreements to restrain trade in a substantial portion of the market for promotion of Championship-Caliber Boxers." In other words, Haymon has mostly all of the big-name fighters and it just isn't fair that he gets to run his own show...

"During my 25 years in boxing, I have watched far too many fighters be chewed up, spit out and left with nothing to sit idly by while Mr. Haymon flaunts a federal law meant to protect those who put everything on the line to entertain fans of our sport," said Oscar De La Hoya. "The Muhammad Ali Act was passed to help fighters avoid the fate that bedeviled so many of our predecessors; and I will do everything in my power to ensure this crucial piece of legislation is upheld and followed."

Specifically, Oscar is alleging that Haymon has been acting as both a manager and a promoter for his fighters (which is prohibited by the Ali Act), and that he's consistently pushing the boundaries of conflict of interest, which the Ali Act was designed to prevent. The fact is, and I've said this many times before, Haymon has found and exploited a loophole in the system to gain a competitive advantage. It's pretty simple to understand and it happens in every industry the world over. He does act as a 'manager' or 'advisor' for his 150+ fighters, but he also pretty much sets up their fights and puts on the shows as well, particularly exemplified by his new PBC series. His one saving grace, thus far, has been that he hasn't actually been the promoter on record for any of these fights which seems to keep him in a sort of a safe-haven. Well Oscar and partner Bernard Hopkins have had about enough of it and are looking to take him down a peg.

"At the age of 50 and after spending most of my adult life in boxing, I thought I'd seen every trick in the book aimed at undermining those who actually step into the ring," said Bernard Hopkins. "Having personally been refused a lucrative fight with a Haymon-managed fighter, I have felt first-hand the impact of Haymon's attempt to form a monopoly. These practices are detrimental to boxers, fans and the sport as a whole."

So what do you all make of this? Is this just a result of plenty of sour grapes to go around? Maybe just a little bit. Oscar and co. do have a point to be made here, but this appears to be one of those letter of the law vs. spirit of the law debates. Ultimately the courts will have to sort this all out.

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