Why do we watch sports? We want to see athletes persevere against odds, mental and physical, real or imagined. We want to see the best in the world perform their craft and do things that we’ve never seen. We want to see the best of the best use their skills against each other to determine which of them is truly the greatest.
It’s simple, really.
What’s wrong with boxing? They, or casual fans anyway, don’t get to see how many boxers persevere against odds. The big names are really all they know. The die-hards know but there aren’t a ton of them left.
They don’t get to see them perform their craft. Not in a way that economically feasible for a lot of fans, especially in America. Fights can be around $55 for non HD and $65 for HD. That’s a lot for just one night of boxing.
They don’t get to see the best because the best duck each other. The best don’t to fight each other for millions, they want to fight each other for tens of millions.
Honestly, a super fight seems like the only way to fix this. It has the adversity, the best fighters on the biggest stage, and the two best fighters fighting one another. Many fans think this way. It meets all of the requirements as to why we watch sports and, it’s all in one convenient little package for everyone. Doesn’t that seem a bit deus ex machina? That’s because it is. This way of thinking is fundamentally flawed because nobody asks one big question.
What happens after the fight?
Do we expect new fans inspired by the glory of the one night affair (that probably cost them $65 to see) to start spending money and rejuvenate the sport? It’s not realistic in any sense of the word. This is all of course assuming that the fight is any good in the first place. That there wasn’t a bad decision or an early knockout.
The fact of the matter is that boxing needs a change from the top down. There’s no need to keep dreaming of the magical super fight that will change everything. The fans are the people with the power. However, as long as they continue to pay for an inferior product, the product itself will continue to be terrible and there’s nothing Floyd Mayweather Jr. or Manny Pacquiao can do about that.
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