“Boxing Is in a Good Place”: After $2.2 Billion Network’s Boxing Exit, Muhammad Ali’s Grandson Nico Ali Walsh Contemplates Top Rank’s “New Era of Boxing” (Exclusive)

Bob Arum still stands as a titan, with a six-decade legacy. Remarkably, at 92, Arum recently asserted that the prestigious heavyweight division is experiencing unprecedented strength. He attributed this newfound vitality to the escalating interest and influence emanating from Saudi Arabia. His journey commenced with a historic alliance with Muhammad Ali and has seamlessly transcended eras.

Arum has now become a support system and promoter for Ali’s grandson, Nico Ali Walsh. So he’s seen all three generations of boxers and is now shaping the sport’s narrative across different epochs. In a conversation with Kenny Ducey for EssentiallySports fancast, Nico Ali Walsh opened up about the exciting future of Top Rank Promotions and where it is heading.

Nico Ali Walsh has high hopes for the future of boxing

Nico Ali Walsh was asked about the guidance he gained under the tutelage of Bob Arum. He talked about how Arum holds immense knowledge about the sport and it’s always a great time talking to him. He has seen the ups and downs of the business and he knows what is best for the promotional banner. In addition, Kenny Ducey delved into a discussion with Muhammad Ali’s grandson regarding the future trajectory of the Top Rank. During their conversation, they explored the departure of the $2.2 billion entity, Showtime, from the sport and the strategic plans that Top Rank has formulated for its next steps.

“I have no clue what’s going on the business side. But I do know that like you know with Showtime just going out of business, or not going out of business, but like leaving like not not going into boxing anymore, so now I heard Al Haymon is signing with Amazon. So Amazon’s going to be having fights which is crazy, but we’re in a new era of boxing where anything’s possible,” remarked Walsh. He went on to say, “They were talking about Netflix having fights which is just insane, but like I don’t know what’s gonna happen with boxing. I don’t know what’s going to happen with Top Rank.”

In an optimistic sentiment, Nico predicted the emergence of even greater opportunities in the future. “I just know that with the way the world’s going now with social media and everything, we’ve got more opportunities to make bigger fights. And to get more viewing on the fights that are made, so I think boxing is in a good place,” stated Nico Ali Walsh.

It seems like the rest of us, Nico Ali Walsh is simply excited about what the future holds for the sport. Meanwhile, many are busy formulating a new future. But what does it hold for the sport?

Bob Arum talks about the new PBC deal

Bob Arum offered valuable insights into the deal between Amazon Prime and PBC’s Al Haymon. Emphasizing the need for strategic caution, Arum underscores the importance of balancing pay-per-view (PPV) and free fights within their platform. At 92, Arum’s wisdom cautions against overloading the platform with PPV events, as he sees it as potentially detrimental for the sport.

In a candid statement to Fight Hub TV, he urged a measured approach: “The only thing I would hope is that they don’t overload it with pay-per-view… because if Al disproportionally uses them to do pay-per-view, that’s a disaster for the sport.” Arum’s perspective aligns with his belief that PPV fights should be reserved for significant events, as he emphasized the importance of making as many fights as possible free for consumers.

 

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