Boxing lost a true believer today, a backer of amateurs and pros, a man who believed the past glories and positive attributes of the sport could be resurrected.
Michael King, who headed up King Sports Worldwide, a promotional outfit based in California, died on Wednesday, at age 67.
A source close to King, who didn’t want to be named, said King was not ill, and characterized the passing as sudden.
The businessman was not merely a player in the boxing scene; along with late brother Roger, he created King World Productions, Inc., the most successful television syndication company in history, which boasted the attractions Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, and The Oprah Winfrey Show. His father, Charles King, got the ball rolling by marketing “The Little Rascals” episodes.
Michael’s first foray into boxing was with All-American Heavyweights, which looked to allow college sports standouts to switch paths to a boxing arc.
I spoke to King not long ago, and discussed some of his company’s hitters, including Hassan N’Dam, who fights June 20 against David Lemieux, and Prince Charles Martin, a heavyweight contender. King expressed hope that the sport could re-orient itself, that more ‘A side vs A side’ fights could be made, looking forward, and he said that many of the promoters tasked with running the sport in the last few decades could have been doing a better job for the fans. Sadly, his vision to attend to that will not come to fruition.
TSS sends condolences to family, close friends and those whose lives King touched.