THE-NONE-TOO-CLEAN: Why Golden Boy Promotions Is Just As Dirty As Any Other Double Dealer, or, The So-Called Future of Boxing

Two weeks have passed since Golden Boy Promotions pulled a nifty short con on the public with its “mystery weight” high jinks for the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Juan Manuel Marquez mismatch. And over the course of those two weeks, the boxing press, such as it is, went completely AWOL on the subject. A few blogs–The Queensberry Rules and Bad Left Hook among them–expressed disgust, but mainstream outlets were too busy thrusting their snouts into oversized cans of Gravy Train to work up a lather. Dan Rafael of ESPN.com touched on the topic last week, but placed most of the blame on Mayweather, as if a boxer handles media kits and press releases, prints up posters, finds a venue, drafts contracts, apprises the world at large about the size of the ring, etc. True, Mayweather was in on the hoax and often sounded like an amateur post-Structuralist deflecting questions about the weight, but the bottom line rests with the promoter of record.

When the real sources–-Richard Schaefer and Oscar De La Hoya–-were asked about the weight, they lied. Period. De La Hoya, without a certificate from the School of Hard Knocks ala Don King or an Ivy League degree ala Bob Arum (you know, the man De La Hoya once referred to as the biggest Jew from Harvard) foolishly said at one point that the fight would be at a catchweight of 143 pounds, and Schaefer disingenuously claimed that the mystery number would boost the fun factor of the weigh-in ceremony. It appears that the real reason they kept the weight and its contractual stipulations hush-hush until the last moment was to make sure negative press about the size differential would not affect pay-per-view sales. In the end, it was all for nothing, since negative press no longer exists in boxing. Other than some of the older writers like George Kimball, Ron Borges, Thomas Hauser, and Charles Jay, boxing no longer has many watchdog types in the media to alert consumers of the everyday shenanigans perpetrated in the Red Light District of sports. Michael Katz, Pat Putnam, and Malcolm “Flash” Gordon are long gone and no one has come along to replace them. Instead we have an army comprised of strange genetic crosses between cheerleaders and lapdogs posing as journalists.

*****

Have you ever wondered how Golden Boy managed to get these blanks dates on ESPN2 and HBO? Ostensibly, it is because GBP has managed to produce sponsors, but in the case of HBO, a subscription-based service, sponsors are irrelevant. HBO, 35 years in the boxing business, now has an exclusive output deal with a promotional firm that not only has a slimmer talent pool than Top Rank, but one that also seems to be losing ground recently. Robert Guerrero may be headed back to Goosen-Tutor promotions after a protracted legal battle, James Kirkland was sentenced to a stretch in the hoosegow, Victor Ortiz found out that his halo was made out of papier-mâché, Ricky Hatton may retire, David Haye is a loose cannon, Vivian Harris is so shot that the only possible reason GBP signed him is to feed him to HBO as a designated punching bag if he can manage to avoid getting knocked out in the meantime, Juan Manuel Marquez is 36, Shane Mosley is 38, Bernard Hopkins is closing in on middle age, and Oscar De La Hoya recently retired from getting smacked around by smaller fighters.

Their biggest star remains Floyd Mayweather Jr., a boxer who works with Golden Boy on a fight-by-fight basis and a handshake agreement. How happy can Mayweather be with his handshake buddies when half of the GBP front office ambushed him after his victory over Juan Manuel Marquez?

*****

For years HBO had a policy of not letting promoters grab the microphone in the ring after a fight (this should probably be known as the Don King Rule), but–voila!–two weeks ago there was Shane Mosley, a Golden Boy representative, pulling a wrestling stunt by bogarting a post fight interview to antagonize Floyd Mayweather Jr. In the background loomed the leering skull of another supposed Golden Boy “Executive,” Bernard Hopkins, resembling The Crypt Keeper without his cowl, jawing away at Mayweather Jr. like Classy Freddy Blassie except free of class.

None of these Golden Boy executives–Mosley, Hopkins, De La Hoya–are nearly as entertaining as Don King is, but for some reason they get to spew forth platitudes, cliches, sales pitches, and malapropisms with virtual impunity.

*****

In a few weeks we will all be lucky enough to read another “blog” entry on RingTV.com by Oscar De La Hoya (It is hard to tell if this blog is “ghosted;” true, it is poorly written, but it is no worse than anything else that passes for writing in boxing these days) about “The Return of Victor Ortiz” and headlines will pour forth quoting sage Oscar, the man who once said African-Americans cannot take body blows. Ortiz, who with each passing day sounds more and more like a jerk, now claims he fought Maidana with a “shattered” wrist. (He also claimed in the same interview with Boxingscene.com that Marcos Maidana is ducking him. Is it too early for him to be punch drunk?) What kind of promoter lets a fighter go into an important bout against a solid contender with a broken wrist? The answer is simple, of course, but why get into it? Ortiz has wasted enough cyber-time. Never has so much attention been lavished on a fighter who has accomplished so little.

*****

Almost nothing De La Hoya says in public is true at this point, but Schaefer, who adds a new ingredient–sanctimony–to the predictable recipe of smart and smug, would like the world to believe that he is a cut above a crooked Faro dealer. Less than a week after telling thesweetscience.com “I want to show people that we’re not anymore the sport of these smoke filled rooms,” Schaefer presided over the phony weigh-in debacle, a swindle if there ever was one. Unfortunately for boxing, it worked. With a reported one million buys, Golden Ploy Promotions succeeded in bilking the public and will now be further emboldened in future stings. Consumer fraud is serious business everywhere, it seems, but in boxing.

*****

Schaefer, like De La Hoya, also suffers from a hefty “Messiah Complex” and is convinced his every move will save boxing from itself. He was proud to bring Mayweather-Marquez to movie theaters (read: closed circuit) over a decade after Bob Arum did the same thing with De La Hoya-Chavez I; he swears he will get boxing back on network TV as if Golden Boy will be the first to do so since the network blackout of the early 1990s. Main Events managed to do it on NBC five years ago. Maybe Schaeffer will succeed where Main Events failed. A few bait and switch schemes here and there, a couple of false advertisements, some mystery catchweights, another Rocky Juarez title shot, two or three bouts featuring Deontay Wilder against the Philly Phanatic and things will work out just fine. They might even throw in a special beer promotion like they did with Mayweather-Marquez. The peculiar benefits of that Tecate promotion were outlined by Daniel Cohen of Ringside Report and can be found here: http://www.ringsidereport.com/rsr/news.php?rowstart=33#news_2205

*****

Golden Boy constantly lectures the world on its superiority to established boxing business traditions. Perhaps they mean that they are actually better than the old guard at playing the same tired games. Here are just a few of their innovative moves: Stealing fighters developed by other promoters (with the lure of HBO dates, since Golden Boy recently took HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg to a tattoo shop and had “Perfect Victim” inked across his ass in gothic script); inserting one of their “executives,” the undisputed gobbledygook king Bernard Hopkins, as a commentator on their own televised promotions; defrauding the public with false weigh-ins; using RingTV.com as a shill box; until recently offering the worst Pay-Per-View undercards imaginable; a lawsuit over the alleged theft of the idea behind “The Next Great Champ” flop television show, handing over a briefcase filled with $250,000 in small bills to Manny Pacquiao as a bribe, oops, signing bonus; pushing one dreadful ”catchweight” bout after another (usually involving a GBP executive); and programming dreck for ESPN2, HBO and Versus. Welcome to the future of boxing.

Topics: Amateur Post-Structuralists, BERNARD HOPKINS, Bob Arum, Boxing, Don King, Floyd Mayweather, GOLDEN BOY PROMOTIONS, HBO, Lapdogs, Malcom Gordon, Messiah Complex, Oscar De La Hoya, Richard Schaefer, Ross Greenburg, Shane Mosley, The Crypt Keeper, The Perfect Victim, VICTOR ORTIZ

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  • http://pacquiao-vs-cotto.cebuspace.com/ Pacquiao vs Cotto

    Golden Boy Promotions is not worth it. I wonder why HBO pays them so much for all those exclusive rights to their fights when in fact they don’t even offer exciting fights for boxing fans. For more Pacquiao vs Cotto update, visit http://pacquiao-vs-cotto.cebuspace.com/

  • RoyT

    Yeah you go it man. Welcome to the future of boxing, more cheating like Floyd Mayweather does. More trash talking like Floyd Snr does. What kind of people they are bragging about how Welterweight Floyd defeated Cry baby lightweight champ.

  • Iking of Pateros

    Excellent! This article is all about truths in boxing! Kudos to Carlos.

  • BoxingFan

    Great Article!!!

  • Senior

    Good article. By the way the Mosley ambushed of Floyd on the ring was great judging by cheater Floyd’s reaction, Mosley & Hopkins should just beat the crap out of Floyd that night they missed out their chance on national TV.

  • buddy

    I have been wanting to say what you just said. That is exactly what I feel then that GBP will be the messiah of boxing but their true colors surfaced immediately and was worst than the established promoters who are lording it over. Now another evil was injected to the sport and its demise would be quicker than expected.

  • John

    Oscar and Schaefer doesn’t care about their fighter by putting them on risky.they suppose protected JMM figthing the disrespectful and weight cheather in the name of Floyd.

  • dr.abdulhadi g.garcia

    Money is their GOD thats why! they thought they can bring it to their Graves. three things will accompany a mans burial but only one will remains on him and the other two will leave. 1st. their loveones (they will leave) 2nd. his wealth ( their loveones will not put them in his graves ) 3rd. His deeds is the only will accompany him in his graves.

  • colt45

    This the most detailed breakdown of the Golden Ploy Promo behind the scene I have ever read.
    Mr. Writer, you have made a great and bravest write-up so far than the rest of the internet boxing writers. I wonder why how GPP have mad a good marriage with the Cable Giant while they fed viewers with PPV fights that are total dismay and total paradox to their super-hype 24/7.
    GPP is going to the same trails as the old school promoters did their thing. The only twist and coating on the choco-pie is that GPP refurbished the old school tricks and magic by making marsh mallows look hard and later pummeled in front of a huge crowd, see Ortiz-Maidana…in addition, the bag of tricks and bait and switch – show me the money of $20 bills to lure the Pac to jump ship…Pac indeed get inside the pouch, and later on make a quick-brown-fox-jumping-over-the-lazy-sneaky-dog…

  • Robert Phil

    You’re right Mr.Writer , nice article.Keep it up.Writer like you are becoming rare this days.More power to you.

  • JUCO

    you nailed it sir…nice article.

  • jude

    i dont think Floyd and jjm, sale 1 mil.. Pay-Per-View may be they just one to make floyd look like he is the best boxer but 4 me he is only a second best….

  • x_Con

    A LOT OF PEOPLE WONDERING AND WAITED FOR THIS KIND OF ARTICLE, EXPOSING THE CHEATERS. THEY CHEATED THE PEOPLE WITH THIER HARD EARNED MONEY GIVEN TO PBF VS MARQS FIGHT.IT WAS NOT A FAIR FIGHT.A LOT OF MONEY THEY GOT NOW AFTER ENSURING FLOYD TO WIN THE FIGHT..it really puzzled everyone why it happened and cheating was allowed..
    .

  • Rrey

    Oscar and whats that name of his executive? sounds sugar? ( ah sorry Shaefer) are business man just like in mafia wars. Play mafia wars and you will know how to defeat them. hehehehe

  • KOWatcher

    At last a true boxing writer, keep it up, Sir….We the fans will back all the way……

  • alvin meynard m. arceo

    right in the button,,

  • Chicago guy

    If that so, change Golden Boy Promotion to Dirty Boy Promotion.

  • junicks

    The Golden Boys Made the boxing dead! Oscar vs Mosley 2x, oscar vs Hopkins, Mayweather vs Marquez, Oscar vs The Contender (I forgot his name) and Oscar vs Manny was their KARMA! You know what? Oscar was my idol before but after the Hopkins fight they nean nothing to me!

  • GBPsatan

    Great, great article. Boxing has and a will always be a cesspool of criminals, liars, and victimizers. Oscar probably started his promotional endeavor with good intentions, but huge amount of money and power can easily corrupt one into the dark side. Oscar not only went into the darkside, he is now one of its master.
    GBP was in trouble with the Marquez/Floyd fight, they got desperate and pulled all the crap they could find. They fooled people by mentioning certain fighter like Judah would be on the undercard. Then they axed them off the card. They kept selling the fight as a competitive fight even though they knew that Floyd would be fighting a jr. lightweight. That’s three divisions smaller than welterweight.
    They also pulled an injury without and medical record to prove their claim. They picked the right victim in Marquez, he was getting old and he needed a big purse on his last leg. He wasn’t about to cancel the fight about the weight. He would have been the goat if he did. Oscar and Floyd conspired against Marquez. GBP should be called Great Bull Promotions for the stunt they pulled the Marquez/Fraud fight.

  • davepinoy

    At last somebody else notice the obvious..
    OSkie and Schaefer are part of the scams and scalawags of the boxing world…together with Fraudweather….\\
    Boxing fans should unite against these liars and sneaky schemers…making a mockery of the publics love for boxing because of their greed and ambitions..

  • mang godo

    my thoughts were written.
    me too is suspicious of this odlh promo. boxing is now like wwe wwf not real but for a show…i saw triple h with mayweather.
    that odlh and mosley fights, odlh and hopkins, were not real but for show. 3 golden boy executives fighting in the ring…you cannot fool me.
    bad goods sell with good ads. we need fda for consumer protection.
    however, there are still good quality products, no consumer fraud, no artificial but real.
    that good is of good quality, organic…the name
    manny pacquiao.

  • kuma

    boxing stinks at the hand of gbp. thanks to odlh, boxing will die soon…

  • GELo

    Great Article! this is what’s missing in the current crop of the so called journalists who “Know It All” about boxing!

  • new

    hahaha… you got them on there ass’s men!
    great!

  • Jou Moer

    Good article. At one point I really believed Oscar and GBP would make a change as unlike King, Arum, etc, these were ex-boxers (Oscar, Hopkins, Mosely) who would do right for boxers, however, when Oscar took Pacquiao to Morton’s at 2am after a 13 hour flight from the Philippines and gave him a suitcase of cash totalling $250,000 I knew he was no different. I believe time has proved me right.

  • coymax

    nice man, i maybe GBP bribe also the HBO to be partnered to them.. who knows..

  • matt

    Facts, facts,and more facts. I’m beside myself. Congratulations to you and Arum.

  • cosme

    great job, congratz!!! i read boxing news and opinions evryday, sad to say, never came across one with a very real view about what’s going on with boxing today…this is really alarming u got cheerleaders and lapdogs feeding boxing to extinction…very honest very true and very brave article u got here…thanks!!

  • shuaBUCKS!

    WOW! This makes sense!… You got them pal… The GBP has too much high regard on themselves, especially Oscar… I have so much regard on the guy when he was a pro boxer but as a promoter he stink! I also hate him when he’s on the mic during GBP’s press conferences, he is not a credible speaker. let the lawyer Scheafer do the talking (another worst in Boxing)…

  • knightrome49

    Everybody said “Amen” to what Carlos Acevedo wrote about the shenanigans by the likes of ODLH, PBF and Richard Schaefer. Now that everybody knew these scumbags are, what do we have to do as the paying public? I’d say, next time around they can not fool the hardworking people who supported these scoundrels hook-line and sinker. As for me, I will save my money by not buying their PPV events.

  • filtux

    what GBP is doing is insulting our knowledge. funny thing is, they dismiss it as good propaganda. it’s about time that somebody should write something about it, because it’s not funny anymore.

  • Johann

    This is the best, most honest, and most unbiased article in boxing I ever read. I hope Kevin Iole will read and learn from this. So as all other so-called boxing journalists. Hope to read some more of your articles Carlos.

  • paul

    Excellent article! A clear, concise, no holds barred expose of boxing’s biggest frauds today.
    Brilliant as usual. Keep up the great work man!

  • http://magtech Weather-weather lang!

    Magnifico! evetyone knows in this world whats happening! Luckily PacMan pillud-out his deal with this Scalawags! Karma to GBP. Lets get united by this grat article! Boycott all GBP fihts this 2010.

  • Caktus_King

    You know its true, most hard core fight fans that I knew, Knew that the fight Marquez V. Mayweather was a Mismatch the only reason they tuned in was hope. I gave up on that fight the day of the weighin.
    Were this article speaks truth to me is that i used to read Ringtv.com to let me know if a fight would be competetive then you have guys like Doug Fisher saying its completly competetive when most people that dont get paid to do this know its no longer competetive when one guys weighs 20 pounds over the other (I’m guessing how much Mayweather bulked up the night of the fight since he wouldnt let himself be weighed).
    I believe less and less in ringtv.com when it comes to articles on a GBP card.
    I want to believe but whenever I read about a GBP fighter it seems forced.

  • amhoney

    One can hardly trust The Ring now that they are owned by Golden Boy. The guys who get out to the fights act like they are the Gods of Boxing, but they are little more than a PR arm for Golden Boy.
    You wrote a highly entertaining and wise article, you nailed it with Golden Boy. I felt cheated and sorry for Marquez. We don’t live in the Sugar Ray Robinson era anymore. Great fighters fight once or twice a year now. The stakes have been raised so high with the greed that every time we tune in we feel we need to see an Ali Frasier or Sugar La Motta. But this is equally the case with Boxing writers. The internet has changed the game and literally hundreds of guys who would never have had the talent or clout of a Bert Sugar are reaching a far greater audience than the newspaper men ever could. I had problems with AOL because they wanted to pay me eight dollars a story before taxes to cover sports for them which basically only college students and the interns in the office were willing to subject themselves to. Those are your sportswriters of today, not the greats of yesteryear or people like you who can pull back the golden glow and the crude metal beneath. Great article, Carlos.

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