How To Make Boxing Great Again
Jamie Savin - In recent times there has been a slight but worrying shift away from Boxing to the fast rising world of the UFC. The shift gathers paces more and more when incidents such as bad judges in Texas in the Diaz/Malignaggi fight and fights falling through due to crazy demands such as Haye and the Klitschko's. True boxing fans accept this sometimes as just the way boxing is but the casual fan doesn't understand why it happens and when weeks later they see the big fights in the MMA/UFC world are being announced. The casual fan begins to question why is this happening there but not in Boxing, even Ricky Hatton has questioned it in reference to his brothers fight falling through with Zab Judah, Hatton even said how UFC was appealing to him. So perhaps to make boxing great lessons must be learned and whilst it is not a quick process change must happen to keep boxing on top of the sporting world..
Article posted on 30.08.2009
The most important change is One Champion for each weight division, give people clear clarity over who is the best in each division. Once in a while an interim champion can be created due to an injury to the recognised champion but this would in theory be an isolated incident dealt with when necessary. Following on from one champion for each weight would be just one set of rankings for each division, so again it is clear to the public who is the number one contender for the belt, also publically announcing matches between fighters ranked 2 and 3 will be the right to face the champion after he has faced his number one contender. Organisations like the WBA are a joke having numerous champions themselves and there ranking system is shambolic it would take a whole new article just to explain the mess they are.
This one will cause discussion for sure, but the champ must face his number one contender and if they do not then they will be stripped of there title. In UFC the fighters are forced to face there number one contender and it produces block buster matches, okay like in boxing the number one contender can be changed to help box office figures as Lesnar walked into UFC and two fights later his getting a title shot, but people will accept this in certain circumstances. For example Williams moving up to Middleweight to fight Pavlik for the title as its a fight which people want to see. People will also mention Mayweather here, how much greater could his legacy be if he was to fight Cotto, Pacquiao and Mosley. People would still ask questions what would happen if fighter X fought fighter Y but under the One Champ for each weight and having to fight your number one contender rules then it would be more likely that these fights would happen. The big fights mean big PPV numbers which is what the businessmen like to see, UFC has recognised this hence why they put on blockbuster main events.
The next part is just as essential as anything but perhaps just as hard (if not impossible) as any change to implement, one match maker and promoter like in UFC, a slight shift to this has happend with the Super Six tournament but this will probably turn out to be an isolated incident. As whilst that tournament will probably determine who is the best Super Middleweight fighter in the world there are still sticking points about not having Bute in the tournament whilst having a fighter like Taylor who has lost 3 out of his last 4 and young prospects such as Dirrel and Ward. One promoter/matchmaker could make the matches the people want to see to determine who is the best in each division and when people move up weights they could then be used to determine where that person should fit in the rankings of that weight division and schedule an appropiate ranking match. Of course due to the money in boxing it is borderline impossible as Arum, Golden Boy et al would never give up the options they have on there fighters but this is what is robbing the fans of the true dream fights in each division. Ego's also come into play as each fighter feels like they should be getting more money then the other, the solution to this should be quite simple though, each fighter gets 40% of the purse and the winner gets the remaining 20%. Like in UFC though this can lead to splinter groups being created signing up fighters that are not attached to the main organisation which can leave fans missing out on some fights. Credit must be given to the UFC on this though as the vast majority of fighters know that the place to be is the UFC because of both the fighters there and the money is the best in the MMA world.
Maybe this article is a crazy wishlist but ask yourselves wouldn't you enjoy boxing knowing that the fights you want to see were going to happen and there was clarity in regards to who is the champion and who his contenders are. Of course there are many issues to get around to ever get close to this happening but it is nice to even think about.
Please leave your thoughts and comments below about how you would make boxing great one more time.
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