Oscar De La Hoya in 2018: ‘Pay Per View is dead’ – 2021 fully resurrected

Oscar De La Hoya

@oscardelahoya

Oscar De La Hoya took to the stage in 2018 after signing a deal with streaming service DAZN – what the Golden Boy boss said stunned the audience.

“I’ve been all over New York, New York City this week and felt a huge, huge buzz,” he stated. “And I want to start by saying, ‘Ladies and gentlemen: Pay-per-view is dead.’

“I’m actually happy to announce that pay-per-view is dead.”

Now, at the time, many believed De La Hoya. DAZN was on the rise, and paying $100 per year for unlimited boxing nights had punters scrambling to sign up.

However, a lack of huge fights over the years between De La Hoya and counterpart Eddie Hearn has seen a push back to the Pay Per View platform.

Fans are eager to fork out extra cash to see some of the biggest names in the sport face each other.

Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder, and Canelo Alvarez hitting almost one million PPV sales over the last two years is evidence of that.

Premier Boxing Champions supremo Al Haymon seems to be turning his attention to the paid market as free boxing nights begin to become few and far between.

Other promoters like Dmitriy Salita and Triller’s Ryan Kavanaugh signed deals with new Pay Per View services to bolster competition.

Many didn’t believe de La Hoya’s declaration at the time, nor is it taken as gospel heading into 2022.

After the former fighter’s comments, ex-partner Richard Schaefer said: “Not only is it alive and well, it’s going to be bigger than ever. These pay-per-view records will fall.”

Stephen Espinoza seconded Schaefer when he stated: “The more things change, the more they stay the same. The true premium fights, those events don’t generate a whole lot of negativity.”

Hearn, aligned to DAZN alongside De La Hoya, was one of those predicting Pay Per View might struggle when he signed on the dotted line and left Sky Sports behind.

But since then, BOXXER and Top Rank have taken his mantel and are keen to keep Sky Sports Box Office in the boxing business.

Amir Khan vs. Kell Brook is the beginning of that in February.

Changing his tune recently, Hearn admitted DAZN would have to enter the PPV market sooner rather than later. A considerable shift in the initial plan.

PAY PER VIEW IS NOT DEAD

Speaking to Fight Hub TV this week, Hearn said: “I can’t believe how many pay-per-views you have. That [Gervonta Davis vs. Cruz] fight is $74.99.

“Two weeks ago or whatever it was, you had (Crawford-Porter), which bombed. Once you do a Canelo fight (on PPV) and absorb whatever it did, 650, 750, whatever, it isn’t easy to bounce back with another one.

“Now you do this one. This [Davis fight] could do 50 or 60,000. You imagine you’ve got a fighter as big a star as Tank, doing whatever it does. Take the week after. Then you have Charles Martin against Luis Ortiz two weeks after that. What’s that all about?

Eddie Hearn
Ed Mulholland

“And I understand. Because I’ve done too many pay-per-views in the past, and you run out of dates on your platform.

“I’m not a believer that pay-per-view is dead. I’m not. But I do believe that [there’s] too much pay-per-view and too much poor quality pay-per-view.”

OSCAR DE LA HOYA

Furthermore, Oscar De La Hoya will undoubtedly switch Golden Boy to DAZN PPV once it finally gets launched. That prediction can be bolstered by the fact that he was himself due to compete on Pay Per View in 2021 against Vitor Belfort.

Pay Per View in boxing is far from dead. Saying that – it seems indestructible.

The views expressed in this article are opinions of Phil Jay.

Phil Jay – Editor of World Boxing News since 2010 with over one billion views. Follow WBN on Twitter @WorldBoxingNews.