In what many consider boxing’s best year yet, 2017 served as a ‘revival’ for the sport, with many notable fights and their location being in New York City. Now, in 2018, the powers that be, are looking to advance the momentum with more of the same.
amNewYork spoke with Mayweather Promotions CEO, Leonard Ellerbe, to gain insight on what local fight fans can expect this year from the company. “We’re all about doing big events and there’s more coming to the area in the next several months. Last year was boxing’s biggest and we’re looking to outdo that in 2018,” says Ellerbe. For the last decade or so, the West Coast has seen more favoritism in terms of getting the most fan attendance and renowned fighters to perform at its venues. However, the occasional megafight that did take place on the East Coast has never seemed to fail in getting public attention either.
“Last year we brought the first event of the year to the city, when Badou Jack and James DeGale headlined and Gervonta Davis fought for a title in Brooklyn. There was well over ten thousand in attendance and it shows that if you give the people a quality product, they’ll come out.”
The promotional outfit also expressed genuine interest in attracting young talent here in New York, as they believe there is no better place to look than the biggest market in the world. Currently, they have Crown Heights native and former Olympian Richardson Hitchins signed to their roster and remain excited at the possibility of acquiring similar, promising up-and-comers. “We’re always looking to work with fighters who fit our brand and with what we want to accomplish (like Hitchins), who is phenomenal and has a bright future ahead of him,” he mentioned.
In attempts to receive somewhat of a ‘spoiler’ for the year, Ellerbe couldn’t give too much away, but did want to credit those who have helped contribute to the present success, “I do want to compliment local promoter Lou DiBella for being very instrumental in bringing boxing back and regenerating interest here. We’re just looking to capitalize on that and further uplift the sport.”