It might be too easy to ask this question right now considering fans are starved for new and live sports content, but would you pay to watch Holyfield vs. Tyson III?
The current sports hiatus has proven that fans love to reminisce, and we’re all great at believing the last generation was the best. Michael Jordan isn’t coming back to the NBA, we’ve seen the last of Manning vs. Brady, but maybe boxing can provide a glimpse of what used to be, by sending two fighters in their 50’s back to the ring.
Last week, one 5-second training video of 53-year old Mike Tyson triggered lucrative fight offers. In an Instagram Live interview with T.I. Harris, Tyson said he wants to box three or four round exhibitions for charity. Monday afternoon, Iron Mike made a possible return to the ring seem like more of a reality, posting an intense training video while proclaiming “I’m Back.”
Keep in mind, the last time Tyson won a sanctioned boxing match was Feb. 22, 2003. Putting in perspective how long ago that was, the night before Tyson won his last fight, Michael Jordan scored 43 points, leading the Washington Wizards to victory over the New Jersey Nets.
Tyson already received a $1 million offer, which was soon upped to $3 million from Australian promoter Brian Amatruda. Later, Tyson received and declined a $20 million bid from Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship President David Feldman.
In the meantime, 57-year old Evander Holyfield has also shared training videos while announcing a return to the ring, looking to raise money for charity through exhibition matches. Tyson has stated he hopes to raise money for drug addicts and homeless people. Holyfield’s initiative is #Unite4OurFight which will help underprivileged students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Admittedly, I’ve never been a boxing fan, but I was locked in when a 60-year old Rocky Balboa returned to the ring in 2006, so I would absolutely pay for Evander Holyfield vs Mike Tyson III.
Poll Data Shows Tepid Response To Tom Brady Joining FOX
“A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.”
FOX Sports reportedly signed Tom Brady to a 10-year deal worth $375 million to make the seven-time Super Bowl champion the new lead analyst for its top NFL broadcast once his playing career is over.
A recent Harris Poll conducted on behalf of Front Office Sports showed that 1 in 3 Americans are more likely to watch a game with Brady on the microphone.
The poll said 2 in 5 NFL fans have a better opinion of FOX Sports following the deal, with 41% of NFL fans being at least somewhat more likely to watch a game with Brady as an analyst.
Data shows one-third of NFL fans think the deal Brady reportedly agreed to is worth about the same as its reported value.
That reaction could probably be described as “tepid”. That may be exactly what FOX expects and maybe all it wants.
Last week, Domonique Foxworth of ESPN suggested that the paycheck is less about what the network thinks Tom Brady means to viewers and more about showing the NFL that the network values its product.
FOX Not Interested In Joining Streaming Sports Wars
“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take?”
The CEO of FOX doesn’t plan on forking over billions of dollars to be people’s last choice for paid streaming services.
Lachlan Murdoch said at a time when more than 80% of American homes already have some kind of paid streaming service, it’s not worthwhile to jump on that train.
Amazon, Netflix and Disney+ typically account for the average streaming presence in a household.
“All this fight that’s going on, sort of gladiatorial kind of bloodshed, is really for that last position, right, in the three to four services that people will take,” Murdoch said at a tech conference earlier this year. “And so the billions of dollars that’s being spent by multiple aspirants is all for that last position. And so we are extraordinarily — I want to say that — we’re happy to be sort of sitting on the sidelines.”
Murdoch told Benjamin Swinburne that when it comes to the NFL, FOX’s media rights are the same as CBS, NBC and ESPN. The main focus for the company remains on keeping games on TV.
“We don’t believe it helps us to put those rights under a streaming service or free on over-the-air. We think it’s very important that those rights remain exclusive to the broadcast environment,” Murdoch said.
FOX does stream games through its app, but it is only the games it is also carrying on its broadcast network or FS1.
NBA Draft To Get Simulcast From ESPN & ABC
“This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.”
ESPN is set for the 2022 NBA Draft coming up on June 23 at 8 p.m. from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The network announced Wednesday the crews that will handle coverage on both ESPN and ABC.
ABC will broadcast the first round in primetime. Kevin Negandhi will host and will be joined by Stephen A. Smith, Chiney Ogwumike and Jalen Rose. Monica McNutt will be reporting and interviewing draftees.
This follows the simulcast model ESPN and ABC have employed for several years with the NFL Draft.
Malika Andrews will host both rounds for ESPN. Jay Bilas, Kendrick Perkins and Adrian Wojnarowski will share the set. Analysts Bobby Marks and Mike Schmitz will contribute.
“We’re thrilled that Malika Andrews will host this year’s ESPN presentation as she brings her well-documented, widespread skillset to our main set,” said David Roberts, head of NBA and Studio Production for ESPN. “The event will showcase the scope and depth of our NBA and college basketball talent roster with accomplished journalists and high-profile personalities across ESPN, ABC and ESPN Radio.”
ESPN will air a pre-draft red carpet show hosted by Cassidy Hubbarth from 5-6 p.m. Perkins and Richard Jefferson will also make appearances.