Hearn: Broner-Rees probably sold less than 2,000 tickets
By Scott Gilfoid: Matchroom Sport Promoter Eddie Hearn sounded disappointed with the turnout for the fight between his fighter Gavin Rees (37-2-1, 18 KO’s) and WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner (26-0, 22 KO’s) last Saturday night at the Boardwalk Hall, in Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA.
Rees was blown out in five one-sided rounds before Ree’s trainer Gary Lockett sailed a white towel into the ring in the 5th to save his fighter when Broner was really giving it to him after having knocked him down with a beautiful left hand to the body.
The next day, a not so happy-sounding Hearn complained bitterly about the U.S crowd turnout for the fight not being big, which Hearn estimates that there were less than 2,000 tickets sold. There’s no doubt those would be horrible numbers for a star like Broner if true.
Hearn said to I Film London “People are talking about the new pound-for-pound rising star Broner, but there was probably less than 2,000 tickets sold last night. It tells you that the sport in America isn’t doing what it’s doing in the UK.”
It appears Hearn’s crowd estimation was a tad bit off, as the numbers I’m hearing for the fight is 4,800 tickets sold. That’s a respectable number for a Broner fight. It’s not 10,000 fans, but it’s still a very, very good turnout for a talent like Broner. But the 1.4 million views on HBO of the Broner vs. Rees fight are really good numbers because those numbers outdid the Saul Alvarez vs. Josesito Lopez fight on Showtime, which had slightly more than 1 million views. If Broner is able to surpass a popular fighter like Canelo, then that suggests that Broner is going to be a huge PPV star in the near future.
Hearn seems to be spoiled from the recent fight between Carl Frampton vs. Kiko Martinez in Belfast, Northern Ireland. That fight had a crowd of 9,000, and they really loud. Of course, going from that to a fight with a crowd half the size it’s going to seem like a dramatic difference to Hearn.
I honestly think Broner’s fight would have had a much better turn out if Broner had faced someone relevant and well known instead of the obscure Rees. This is on Golden Boy. They picked out Rees despite the fact that only the hardcore boxing fans knew who he was. When you foolish things like then of course it’s going to hurt the gate in a major way, but that’s not on Broner. 4,800 is incredibly good given what Broner had to work with in terms of an opponent.
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