With the news earlier this week that Showtime, who has broadcast boxing since 1986, will no longer be showcasing the sport after the end of the year, junior welterweight star Ryan Garcia and undisputed welterweight champion Terence Crawford took to social media to voice their desire to reinvent the way boxing is distributed to the masses.
Showtime will follow in the steps of its corporate rival, HBO, which exited the sport five years ago. Paramount Global, the parent company of Showtime, based its decision to cut boxing out of a desire to focus on the Paramount+ app and original scripted programming that will drive subscriptions.
I couldnt agree more @RyanGarcia. The system we have isn’t going to fix this. We gotta think different. Look at every other sport is building empires by doing it right. Us fighters need to come together. We can fight in the ring but work together for our sport and our families. https://t.co/rJOTFNIxkJ
— Terence Crawford (@terencecrawford) October 17, 2023
Seeing two of the biggest stars in the sport come together in public is a great moment for the sport. Fighters like Ryan Garcia and Terence Crawford have staged some of their biggest matchups on Showtime, so the news hit them personally. Other prominent figures in the sport spoke up as well, such as Jake Paul, Teofimo Lopez, and Oscar De La Hoya.
“I’m all the way in” Paul said.
“I’ve been quiet too long,” Lopez wrote. “I love Boxing and will find more ways to help the next generation of our beloved sport we call ‘Boxing.’”
Oscar De La Hoya also offered his thoughts on Showtime’s departure, which was both welcomed and respectfully addressed by Terence Crawford, as he highlighted the importance of fighter involvement in setting up the biggest fights in the world.
“I salute Showtime for their near-40 year commitment to the sport that I love,” De La Hoya wrote. “I am hopeful that we promoters can use this unfortunate situation to put our differences aside and start working together more often to help make more of the bigger fights and grow our sport.”
“Respectfully @OscarDeLaHoya if the boxers aren’t at the table, it isn’t going to work,” Crawford responded.
With Showtime out of the picture come 2024, PBC is currently in the process of searching for their broadcasting partner. It is rumored that Amazon and DAZN, the provider for Matchroom Boxing and Golden Boy Promotions, are two networks that are in discussion with Al Haymon’s promotional company.