Dana White’s attempt to transplant the successful business model he has employed in the UFC to the boxing world could be a setup for failure, according to one of the sport’s most successful promoters.
Eddie Hearn is an admitted fan of White’s promotional tactics which has grown the UFC from a niche sport to a multi-billion dollar empire in the last quarter century or so but any attempt to mirror what has worked for White in his promotion career thus far in the soon-to-be-launched Zuffa Boxing is easier said than done, says Hearn.
“I think Dana White is a very intelligent man,” Hearn said to the The Luke Thomas Show via MMA News. “I think he’s a great promoter as well. A lot of the stuff that he’s done with the UFC — I’ll be honest, I’ve copied a lot of it. They’ve done a great job.
“I think the difference [is] he’s gonna find it very different in boxing [compered to] UFC. It’s not a sport that you can go in and dominate the fighters, control the fighters, get them to sign contracts to fight ultimately whoever they’re told to fight, which is the UFC model.”
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Chief among Hearn’s claim is that boxing stars are given a far greater say in who they fight, something which the UFC have traditionally been uneasy with in the top-down way in which the promotion is run.
“One of the reasons I think the UFC does so well is because fighters really are told which fights they’re taking,” Hearn explained. “That’s not the way in boxing. [In] boxing, the fighters tend to have much more control over their career. Of course there are a number of promoters, there are a number of networks who are involved, so there’s a huge amount of politics in the sport of boxing, which is frustrating sometimes.
“I think that’s something that’s actually going to frustrate Dana White. So I would love him to have a go at that, because I think the more promoters, the more investment, the more people making effort to make this sport great, the better. So here’s more than welcome, but I don’t think he’ll have the same kind of model as the UFC.”