Main Events moves forward
This Thursday night from the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut, Main Events is staging a card featuring a main event between middleweights Vaughn Alexander and Elvin Ayala. This show also features local talent and fledgling prospects. For Main Events, it’s all about finding their next Sergey Kovalev, Tomasz Adamek or Arturo Gatti, a franchise fighter who can be the foundation of the company.
In the wake of Kovalev’s loss to Andre Ward, back in mid-June, many wondered about the long-term viability of Main Events.
But Kathy Duva, who heads up this promotional outfit, isn’t too concerned. She told UCNLive.com a few weeks ago, “We go through this every five years or so. Sergey’s still fighting. We have a deal with HBO. We have a good relationship with HBO and we’re going to keep working with them and I’ve got a whole bunch of young fighters.”
One of those boxers is middleweight LeShawn Rodriquez, who will appear on Thursday night’s card, along with heavyweight Cassius Chaney. “And we’ve got a few other people that we’re talking to, so I have no worries that we’re not going to be able to build some more stars,” stated Duva, whose company will host a show at the Theater of Madison Square Garden on November 25 as Kovalev returns against Vyacheslav Shabranskyy on HBO.
You don’t always thrive in this racket but you have to be able to survive it. Main Events has been in this position before.
Duva notes, “Next year will be our 40th year in the business, next May, and, if you can’t roll with the punches, there’s no way you can last in this business. We always do; we always will. We’ll be fine. They shouldn’t be digging our grave yet. We always find ways to come back. We find ways to re-invent ourselves.”
She chuckles as she says this but there is a realization that if you don’t evolve, you will become extinct. Every company today that is thriving has some sort of television deal or partnership in place.
“We’re working on three different deals right now, so hopefully one of them comes through,” she explained to UCNLive.com. “And let’s put it this way: You see like (Top Rank CEO Bob) Arum’s deal on ESPN, the driver of the deal is the digital component and that is where the sport is headed. And that is where everybody has to go – that’s where the televisoin business is going. You can see it.
“So we’re good. We have a nice library. We’re well situated. We’ll figure it out and there are literally three different deals that we’re talking to people about. We’ll figure out what the best one is. It’s not like I have it today or like I can tell you tomorrow what it is but I know it’s going to happen because, the fact is, we’re good at what we do and we have that library and there’s going to be a big player out there that’s going to want to partner with us. It’s just a matter of picking and choosing the right deal and again, I’ve been approahed several times, I just want to choose the right partner and I’m pretty sure that we will.”
Several years ago, Main Events had an output deal with NBC and they were able to develop Kovalev before the Premier Boxing Champions did a time-buy with the network that has since not been renewed.
Duva continued, “In the meantime, I have a great relationship with HBO and I’ll continue to put fights with them and there’s opportunties for us there.”
So will there be life after the “Krusher”?
“I have great faith that we can do what we have done for the last 40 years – and that’s sign good talent, make the system work for them, make them successful and present them to the boxing audience,”says Duva.
Matchroom Boxing is staging a press conference on Tuesday in Manhattan to announce its upcoming show on November 11 that will spotlight fiormer middleweight titlist Danny Jacobs…Didya read this about this conflict at the Mayweather Boxing Club leading to a murder?…Heard that a Julian Williams-Ishe Smith match-up could be taking place in November…So is the Deontay Wilder-Luis Ortiz fight off or not? We’ll have more on this situation with Victor Conte on this weeks episode of “The Next Round”…Right now it’s ‘Bama and Clemson that seem to be head-and-shoulders above everyone else in college football, followed by Oklahoma and Georgia…OK, does Miami finally defeat FSU?…I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and I tweet (a lot) at twitter.com/steveucnlive. I also share photos of stuff at instagram.com/steveucnlive and can also be found at tsu.co/steveucnlive.