By Jake Donovan
PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Eddie Hearn couldn’t help but laugh once he saw that he’d become the target of Oscar de la Hoya’s latest Twitter rant.
The two are the main content providers on sports streaming platform DAZN, with Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing helping launch the service in the America market last September. Soon thereafter, de la Hoya brought the entire Golden Boy stable over, including his biggest star, reigning World middleweight champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, who remains without an opponent for his next fight which is planned for September 14.
For whatever reason, anyone other than de la Hoya or a Golden Boy employee discussing anything about Alvarez remains a trigger for the Hall of Fame former six-division titlist-turned-leading promoter. This is where England’s Hearn fell prey, openly discussing his thoughts on the Mexican icon’s immediate future.
“I think it was the Chris Mannix podcast where he asked me about Canelo,” Hearn recalled with BoxingScene.com of the recent sequence of event. I guess people think since I’m with DAZN as a promoter, so they ask me about DAZN fighters. So the question was about Canelo, and I just said ‘I think he’s going to fight [three-time light heavyweight titlist Sergey] Kovalev, DAZN wants him to fight GGG’ and so on.
“So, Oscar’s like ‘Stay out of it.’ I’m like, ‘I’m just talking about it.’ I’m a fan of the sport and was just giving my opinion.”
It led to de la Hoya ranting about how Hearn’s alleged inability to secure a rematch between Andy Ruiz Jr. and Anthony Joshua.
“Eddie Hearn, let me worry about Canelo and his next opponent, which doesn’t involve you,” de la Hoya recently tweeted. “You worry about securing the rematch for Joshua with Ruiz for DAZN – which I hear you are having problems with.”
Hearn had his own retort online, shooting back that he guarantees he’ll have a done deal for that fight before de la Hoya buttons up plans for Alvarez’s next fight. Beyond what he views as fun banter, the veteran promoter actually sympathizes with de la Hoya.
“Oscar has to be frustrated because the whole plan in signing with DAZN was Canelo-GGG III. And he was probably due to deliver that,” theorized Hearn. “If Canelo wants to go in another direction, there’s not a lot Oscar can do about that.”
Still, the shot at Hearn was more revealing than it was shocking. Despite the two serving under the same broadcasting platform, there hasn’t been the suggestion at least from the Golden Boy Promotions side that it’s one big happy family at DAZN. It’s a shame because it’s not a viewpoint shared by the service’s biggest fight night provider.
“We support Golden Boy 100%,” points out Hearn. “Norbelto Jimenez, who just fought Kal Yafai (in their 115-pound title fight Saturday evening in Providence, R.I.) was a Golden Boy fighter. We’ve always had a fight or two from Golden Boy on our shows. We love working with Oscar, working with Eric Gomez, with Roberto Diaz.
“Of course, every once in a while Oscar has to get on Twitter and start trolling. He just can’t help himself. But to be honest, it’s probably good for the sport. When he does stuff like this, it gets people talking.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox