Should Errol Spence Jr. sign with Golden Boy Promotions or Top Rank? (Radio)Written by Joseph Herron
Before newly crowned IBF Welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. put forth an impressive knock-out performance over former titlist Kell Brook in Sheffield, England, Hall of Fame fighter and ambitious promoter Oscar De la Hoya spoke highly of the Texas based pugilist, and showed a genuine interest in working with the 27 year old puncher.
(Image courtesy of Premier Boxing Champions)
"I love Spence...he reminds me of young Sugar Ray Leonard," boxing's Golden Boy recently told FightHub TV. "I love his energy, his persona...I love who he is and how he carries himself. I would love to promote him. He currently has no promoter...I would love to get my hands on him and promote his career. He could become a big, big star with the right team behind him."
Despite becoming a legitimate world champion and putting forth a superb, star-making performance on May 27, very few outside of the die-hard boxing community are aware of the special talent that is Errol Spence Jr.
According to numbers recently released, Showtime's live matinee broadcast of "Brook vs. Spence" on May 27 only peaked at 337,000 households and averaged an unimpressive audience of 291,000 homes.
He's a former U.S. Olympian and now an undefeated world titlist, who could very well prove to be the best American fighter in professional boxing.
On Wednesday night's edition of FightSaga Radio, three-decade fight trainer and experienced boxing manager James Gogue provided some insight into Spence's curious situation.
"He should have signed with a top promoter as soon as he turned pro," claims the knowledgeable boxing manager/trainer. "Instead he signed a contract with Al Haymon, who doesn't like to make deals with promotional companies because he acts as the promoter."
"But Al is no damn promoter. He'll get you fights because he has or had plenty of TV dates, but he doesn't understand how to cultivate a fighter's brand and turn his clients into hot ticket sellers."
According to Gogue, Errol should have decided to work with a promotional group who has a proven track record of cultivating the biggest stars of the sport. When examining the career's of boxing's most prolific and well-known fighters over the last 30 years, one company truly has separated themselves from the promotional pack within the U.S. market.
"Errol should have signed with Top Rank, who I think is the best promoter here in the states," Gogue stated on this week's edition of FightSaga Radio. "They are the second best promoter in the world right now behind Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Sports. They understand the principles of nurturing a fighter's career, making them big ticket sellers and expanding their popularity. "
"Look what they're currently doing with Jose Ramirez in Fresno and Terence Crawford in Omaha. They've done a masterful job in developing their fan base."
It's often said that home is where the heart is...the age old adage also applies to the business of boxing. The thirty-five year fight trainer insists that a strong effort in and around the Dallas/Ft. Worth area while competing at the 4, 6 and 8 round stages would have paid dividends in creating a much bigger and energized fanbase for the young Texas based champion.
"Haymon should have been featuring this kid in home area of Dallas, Texas, as a headlining attraction on a consistent basis...it's only the fourth largest city in the USA. It's crazy! You can't build a fan base fighting in Toronto, Canada, Indio, CA, then Long Island, New York, when you've spent your entire life training and living in the DFW area and expect your hometown fans to care or even know who you are."
"There's a reason why the Dallas Cowboys play eight home games every year at Cowboys Stadium. That's where the great majority of their fans are. To the best of my knowledge, Errol has only been featured in Dallas one time since turning pro. If you expect this kid to eventually become a major draw in boxing, you have to get the mainstream press and the casual sports fans interested and involved. That happens when presented to an audience at home."
"But you can't blame Spence...he's just the fighter. You have to blame the person or group making the decisions in his career, which right now is Al Haymon."
Will Haymon and company finally start featuring Errol Spence Jr. as a headliner in the fourth largest metropolitan area in America, or will the new IBF champ be forced to look elsewhere for career guidance?
Listen to James Gogue and Joseph Herron discuss the business of boxing as it relates to newly crowned welterweight belt-holder Errol Spence.
The audio player is embedded at the bottom of the page.