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Haymon hits SoCal

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The Haymon effect continued in the boxing world this past weekend as Premier Boxing Champions held their second fight card of 2015 with a solid night of fights at the still breezy yet soon to be hot weather of Southern California.

The Citizens Business Bank Arena, who hosts boxing cards, just not on a regular basis, (which they should) was blessed to be Al-sized for the night with one man entrances, cheesy entrance music and a lack of ring card girls, yet still your regular typical, beer induced, box crazed fans in tow for the night of fisticuffs.

The first thing to catch your eye at a Premier Boxing Champion card in which Joseito Lopez was stopped by Andre Berto and Shawn Porter stopped late opponent Erik Bone’, is the dazzling overhead light and TV screen set up, which is a sight to see and will provide replays for venues not so equipped at doing so.

The second thing is yes, the infamous solo ring walk. I perched myself within the midst of this occurrence to get a bird’s eye view for you, the reader, of course, because we here at 3MR are all about the readers!

In person, the lit railings, smoke and fighter walk are exciting. The promotional crew hilariously kept yelling at fans who were chosen to align along the railing and cheer to have a ‘Shit load of energy guys!’ and ‘cheer these guys on’!

Despite being instructed to provide energy to the cameras/fighters, it’s hard not to agree that it was effective.  Putting the fan into a position to interact that way, and catch a little TV time in the process, is a great move by the PBC.

Now about those cameras… from press row, it was shocking to see referee Jack Reiss with a black headband on. We writers were shocked to find out that the headband was actually a camera! The replay was shown on the TV screens and again, although there was something dis-in genuine about it, the end result was an awesome third man view of the fight in the ring.  There were also many different angles shown throughout the night which are new to our sport; again, a bit farcical, yet still effective and engaging to the fans/viewers.

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As for the crowd, I was a bit surprised to walk into the arena entrance and see a full lobby filled with fans who seemed excited to be there. Once in the actual arena, the overhang and projecting lights brought out a ramped up shot of excitement into the night. It was an almost full house, and littered with freebies or not, the crowd was into it, even during the usual lulls in-between fight action.

The arena was littered with boxers, Haymon aligned and not: Sergio Mora, Gabriel Rosado, Keith Thurman, Leo Santa Cruz, Abner Mares, Mauricio Herrera, Karim Mayfield, Antonio Tarver, legend Tommy Hearns and a handful of MMA fighters who also do battle on the Spike network.

The awkward back and forth walk from press row to the overhead dais provided fans the opportunity to interact with Hearns, who at his age pulled off standing at the dais and doing analysis at the press table, despite all the miles on those fight worn legs and arms.

Overall, it’s hard not to grade the event with an A. Perhaps being live and in person would lift one’s grade up, but hey, where else should a SoCal fan be on fight night?

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