PBC is reportedly close to a broadcast deal with Amazon Prime for their boxing events. If the deal is completed, Amazon Prime will be the new home for Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions [PBC] company to replace Showtime, which will no longer show the sport after this year is up.
Ariel Helwani is reporting that he’s hearing that PBC is “very, very close” to a deal with Amazon Prime, which has 167 million subscribers. PBC & Amazon are in talks to possibly make a deal. Whether Amazon is willing to meet PBC’s asking price remains to be seen.
If Haymon can’t swing a deal with Amazon Prime, we could see many of his fighters abandoning his sinking PBC ship and going over to Top Rank to fight on ESPN or signing with Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing to fight on DAZN.
PBC close to broadcast deal with Amazon Prime
Haymon has a lot of great fighters, but they won’t sit around inactive for years if he cannot find a new broadcast partner.
PBC has a lot of good fighters, but unfortunately, many of the fights are disappointing to watch, with the A-side fighter facing opposition that has very little chance of winning.
For example, rather than seeking mismatches involving Gervonta Davis, we could see PBC matching him against higher-quality opposition if Amazon Prime executives insist on competitive fights.
Many of Gervonta’s fights for PBC have been mismatches from the word go and horrible to watch unless your the type of fan that enjoys non-competitive fights.
In theory, that would bring in my viewers to PBC’s boxing events, expanding the reach of Haymon’s company. This could create pressure on PBC to put on more entertaining fights moving forward, which would be good for the fans.
“The big question is, where is PBC going? That was the final Showtime boxing pay-per-view [David Benavidez vs. Demetrius Andrade] and the second to the last one ever. The last one is going to be in December in Minneapolis, headlined by David Morrell [against Sena Agbeko at The Armory in Minnesota],” said Ariel Helwani on his YouTube channel.
“What I’m hearing right now is PBC is very, very close to a deal with Amazon, and we’ll see what happens there. There will be events if your an Amazon Prime subscriber, just like if your an Amazon Prime subscriber if you want to watch the NFL, you can get those games.
“Then there will be certain fights that will be behind the pay-per-view paywall on Amazon and on traditional pay-per-view platforms, such as PPV dotcom and in Demand, cable, satellite, etc.”
Hopefully, the new deal for PBC doesn’t involve mostly PPV fights on Amazon Prime, as the boxing fans don’t want to be forced to pay for every event.
That won’t work because fans aren’t going to want to pay to see unknown fighters at the beginning of their careers, and putting everything behind a paywall will scare people off.
People already must pay for the price of an Amazon Prime membership, and it would be bad to ask fans to pay to watch boxing on PPV on top of that.
“So that could be the new home now that Showtime deal is done, and you need that home, you need that platform because if you don’t have that platform, it’s going to be hard to book Crawford-Spence, which looks like it’s going to be in March, like Benavidez & Canelo, and a Tank Davis fight,” said Helwani.
Where will PBC fighters go if no deal with Amazon Prime?
“You need that platform, so hopefully that comes to fruition, and there’s a new player in the world of boxing. Is it not fun?
“I watched David Benavidez lay the smackdown on Demetrius Andrade. It was a very, very impressive performance, and now I want to see him vs. Canelo next,” said Helwani.
“That could happen [PBC fighters going over to DAZN], but Al Haymon isn’t talking about going out of business, obviously,” said Gareth A. Davies to Boxing King Media.
“Premier Boxing Champions were on Showtime. That was their home for several years, but there is talk of Amazon, Netflix, these guys. If they sign one of those big deals, I could see the fighters staying with them, but Bob Arum and Top Rank and ESPN are a very powerful force over there as well,” said Gareth.
It could be bad for the PBC fighters that haven’t been busy this year if the negotiations with Amazon Prime drag out into late next year or if they fail to produce a deal.
Unless they’re one of the popular millionaire fighters like Keith Thurman, who can afford to sit on the sofa for many years without worry, they won’t be happy if PBC doesn’t strike a deal quickly with Amazon Prime or another network platform.
“So you could see them going there. It will all come down to business deal, and what’s in it for them and how they project a number of fights and who they’re fighting, and how the beans count up at the end,” said Davies about PBC & Amazon Prime.