This is an opinion article, based on my opinion of how HBO is protecting and promoting only the fighters they can sign, or sign, due to what they think their abilities are. This is, after all what every sport (I’m a fan) every book (I’m a writer) every album (I’m a singer) every movie (I write screenplays) comes down to, the ugliest two syllables in the English language… business, which means, money. This is why I appreciate independent art, music, literature, why I stopped playing with certain bands I was in, why I’m not a well known author, because the business side of it makes it all terrible. It’s about what you look like, how you do it, not your abilities or what you can do better, and sometimes, it’s plain being in the right place at the right time, which is why I so much love Manny Pacquaio, for taking the opportunity to become the best, and why I love Bernard Hopkins, who went against the boxing system, but because of his immense talent became a living legend anyway. I am just severely sick and tired of HBO’s announcing bias announcing crew. And recently, I’ve been enjoying Showtime better. So here’s my rant on HBO’s show last night, where, if I had it on mute, it would have been great.
HBO should come up with their own title, as they come up with their own facts, instead of stating them like opinions. In what ruined a great show, was the announcing team of HBO, this time it was the more annoying presence of Max Kellerman that was ranting about his “thoughts” that he states as fact. First, Chris Arreola was scheduled to fight club level Brian Minto in a comeback for Arreola, after losing to Vitali Klitschko. Max Kellerman would go on to review the heavyweight division, and say that the way to become a heavyweight champion, the only way, is to beat one of the Klitschko Brothers. Wladimir or Vitali. He called David Haye only a title holder, not a real champion. Haye holds the WBA title, Vitali the WBC, and Wladimir holds the IBF and less important WBO… fact is… they’re all title holders, none of them have lineage, or have collected all the titles. Then you have Emanuel Stewart, who goes on his rants, and he starts talking about Brian Minto, how he only weighted 215 and how there should be a heavyweight and a Super Heavy division (great, make things more confusing) Oh yeah?
So last night the main event was Paul Williams against Sergio Martinez – the two best jr. middleweights in the world fighting at middleweight. They showed some of their fights, and the only one they show for Martinez was his fight with Cintron that ended in a draw, and then I waited for Kellerman to go on his rant, which he did, explaining how “Cintron lost that fight three times.” This is what Kellerman claims. Cintron was counted out, wrongly, by the ref, his corner got in the ring, the fight continued, and it ended in a draw. So Kellerman says, “He got knocked out.” Cintron went down, because he thought it was due to a head butt, when he realized he was being counted, he was up before nine. Then Kellerman said he should have been DQ’d because of his corner coming in the ring.
Well, Max, what about your hero, Floyd Mayweather vs Zab Judah? Mayweahter’s corner came in the ring, and the fight continued. Zab Judah should have a win over Mayweather in his opinion, then, right? However, Max Kellerman is fine with that, and because he thinks Martinez should have won, he says the “draw” was wrong. Fact is, is that it was a draw, and then, an upcoming HBO “product” Alfredo Angulo got an easy fight against Cintron. Cintron beat him. Yet, they keep showcasing Angulo on HBO against guys like Harry Joe Yorgey, while Cintron, who lost to one guy, in Margarito, (and it was right before Margarito stopped Cotto, but Cotto was a “product” of HBO, so of course, he must have had plaster in his gloves when he beat Cotto, not Cintron, so Cotto fights Pacquiao and Cintron gets nothing) Well, we saw what happened to Cotto against Pacquaio, and Jim Lampley said, “When will Cotto be great again?” When was he great? When he was fed bums on HBO month after month? Look at “other” HBO products.
Wladimir Klitschko. He was 40-1 (one loss to double digit loser Ross Purrity, and he got stopped by him!) and got dropped 4 times against Corrie Sanders, who fought four rounds in the previous two years, and Ko’d Klitchko in the second, then Lamon Brewster KO’d Wladimir Klitschko. They ripped off Bernard Hopkins, saying Jermain Taylor beat him, which he didn’t, and now Jermain Taylor has gotten KO’d three times since, one by Kelly Pavlik, who Hopkins schooled last year. You know who was not a product of HBO? Gold Medalist Andre Ward. I mean, the guy wins a gold medal and they have him on one time, then decide not to show him, and on Showtime, thankfully, with a record of only 20-0 he not only won the WBA title, his first, but beat the favorite of the Super Six tournament, and beat him up, in 42-1 Mikkel Kessler. I love it. HBO passed on the Gold Medal winning WBA super middleweight champion.
In this war, when Showtime had Mike Tyson, and he lost to Danny Williams, HBO made comments, but they went on to show Evander Holyfield get beat by Larry Donald. I am just sick of this constant HBO bias for certain fighters they are determined to make winners, and show off, and if they don’t pan out, they’re done. Coming up next weekend is a three part “nother” chance for some HBO “product” they’ll fit into one episode. Victor Ortiz, who was the next “Golden Boy” got knocked down twice and quit in the sixth round of his last fight. Juan Diaz got a gift decision over light punching Pauli Malignaggi, this is it for both of them. And Vitali Klitshcko, who I consider the best heavyweight at the moment, not because he quit against Chris Byrd, yeah, but because even though he fought backing up against Chris Arreola, I think Arreola was the best heavyweight to get a shot at that time, I thought he’d be fighting Kevin Johnson for the “Real” Championship, and Vitali will go up against Kevin Johnson next. Oh, how I wish Arreola and Johnson would have fought Wladimir, but, HBO wouldn’t let that happen, they rebuilt Wladimir Klitschko’s career, they’ll put him up against light punching Eddie Chambers, who Wlad will jab, boringly, then bring the right hand over, and win by a stoppage in round eight or win a decision, both boring, and the announcers will tell you how great Wladimir “Stiff-ko” is – I mean, Klitschko, who Tyson would have taken out in the first – on Showtime.
Robert Earle Stanton is a freelance writer, short fiction author and novelist.
Check out the book The Fearless Harry Greb: Biography of a Tragic Hero of Boxing by clicking here.
See the documentary Tyson on DVD by clicking here.
To purchase the boxing video game Fight Night: Round 4, click here.