Boxing fans are acquainted with the tectonic shifts which sent out deeply echoing rumbles the last couple years, and really kicked off when Team HBO drew a line in the sand, with a lightsaber, and declared they wouldn’t do any more business with Golden Boy Promotions, Oscar De la Hoya’s outfit which back in March 2013, was being mostly run by Richard Schaefer.
That ruling, which meant that Al Haymon would not be able to have HBO as a check-furnisher for his stable of boxers, set in motion a re-shift of players, alliances and allegiances. That shift re-reset when De La Hoya, sober and once again steely eyed, declared that he wanted his company back. Schaefer chafed, and put his foot down, basically telling folks that he did the heavy lifting while the Golden Boy floundered personally and then flurried to regain his footing. In June of 2014, Schaefer jetted from Golden Boy and he and Oscar stepped into a new arena, with ODLH seeking a monetary payout from his ex bestie; the ex banker put out this statement at the time.
“After more than 10 years with Golden Boy, it is time to move on to the next chapter of my career,” Schaefer said. “This decision has required a great deal of personal reflection, but ultimately I concluded that I have no choice but to leave. I have succeeded in banking and I have succeeded in boxing, and I look forward to the next opportunity.
“I am proud to remain a shareholder, so I have a strong interest in the continued success of the company. I am proud of what we have accomplished at Golden Boy, but I now look forward to new challenges.”
One “challenge” was Oscar’s suit, an arbitration setup, which requested $50 million in damages from Schaefer for not running the company in right fashion. They settled in January.
Ah, but shifts and after tremors are still felt.
On Friday, we got word that De La Hoya isn’t done fighting, or ceding hard won territory to Al Haymon, the ex music biz mogul who is the largest scale disruptor boxing has even seen. His deal with the networks, his stable-on-steroids army of boxers, now over 200, his time buy deal with ESPN, his deals with cablers galore, has the fight game in a state of jaw-drop disarray, with the “new normal” being re-defined on a weekly basis.
Check out this release sent out by Golden Boy, which makes clear that Oscar won’t be giving in to the perception that Haymon is a lead dog who can trot off with any bone he likes.
Oscar is stating that Gonzalez is still under contract to his company, and is improperly fighting this evening, against Gary Russell Jr., because he GBP has exclusive promotional right to the Mexican…who is tonight NOT fighting under the Golden Boy banner.
Note: I reached out to a rep for Haymon Boxing, as Haymon is several times referenced in the release and official court complaint, and was told Haymon did not wish to respond.
GOLDEN BOY FILES SUIT AGAINST JHONNY GONZALEZ AND PROMOCIONES DEL PUEBLO
LOS ANGELES, (March 27, 2015) Boxer Jhonny Gonzalez and his Mexican promoter Promociones del Pueblo conspired with manager/promoter Al Haymon to violate Golden Boy’s exclusive rights to promote Gonzalez, a bombshell complaint filed today against the fighter and the promotional company contends.
Despite Golden Boy’s repeated attempts, Gonzalez, Promociones del Pueblo and Haymon repeatedly refused to put on tomorrow night’s fight between Gonzalez and Gary Russell, Jr., until they cut Golden Boy out of the process, clearly violating the agreement between the boxer and promoter.
“Golden Boy’s contract with Jhonny Gonzalez couldn’t be clearer – the company has exclusive promotional rights for two years or four fights, and neither of those milestones has been reached to date,” said Golden Boy Spokesman Stefan Friedman. “Furthermore, the motive behind the defendants adamant and longtime refusal to match Gonzalez with Gary Russell, Jr is now plain for the world to see. We will vigorously fight to ensure our contract is enforced.”
Golden Boy is seeking damages of no less than $1 million and for the court to enforce the company’s existing contract with Gonzalez.
According to the complaint:
“In December 2013, Golden Boy entered into a written agreement with Gonzalez and DPP wherein Golden Boy obtained the exclusive right to promote Gonzalez’s professional boxing matches throughout the world for a period of two years beginning on the first bout conducted pursuant to the agreement, or four fights, whichever comes first (the “Agreement”). The Agreement further provides that Gonzalez will not take part in any professional boxing match prior to the first bout conducted pursuant to the Agreement.
In August, 2014, Golden Boy proposed that Gonzalez fight Gary Russell, Jr., a promising featherweight boxer in either November or December of that year. DPP initially ignored this proposal and then rejected it, preferring to have Gonzalez fight a lesser opponent, Jose Arce, in Mexico in October.
Thereafter, Golden Boy continued to try and find appropriate fights for Gonzalez. However, DPP consistently refused the fights proposed by Golden Boy for Gonzalez.
In February, 2015, it became clear why DPP was refusing all of the fights proposed by Golden Boy for Gonzalez. DPP was conspiring with Russell’s manager/promoter, Al Haymon, to put together a fight between Gonzalez and Russell in which Golden Boy would not be involved.”
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
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