When could boxing return? Eddie Hearn explains ‘Fight Garden’ plan to revive sport in Matchroom HQ garden

Eddie Hearn says we have to get used to the idea of ​​the sport taking place behind closed doors for the foreseeable future.

The coronavirus pandemic has taken its toll on the sporting calendar, with most events around the world suspended or canceled.

Mark Robinson / Boxing Matchroom

Eddie Hearn plans boxing return in July

We are seeing the first provisional setbacks for UFC and football in the Bundesliga, but in tightly controlled environments.

Hearn told talkSPORT: “I think every sport right now has to be creative, be innovative and be safe and try to focus on running events behind closed doors for the foreseeable future.

“Trying to make sure the players are safe, the officials are safe and everyone is safe. Ultimately, produce a compelling product for fans and home broadcasters.

“The broadcasters are important because, remember, we are not competing with other boxing promoters, we are competing with other sports because when we come back Sky in particular is going to be inundated with boxing holders. rights and organizations.

Eddie Hearn posted pictures of what the Matchroom HQ setup will look like

Eddie Hearn

Eddie Hearn posted pictures of what the Matchroom HQ setup will look like

“You have to be convincing and innovative and come up with ideas, like the Matchroom fight camp, where broadcasters are going to say ‘wow, we like that’.

“It’s going to be tough and there will be a lot of sports that we will see go off the commercial radar over the next few months.”

Hearn revealed over the weekend ambitious plans to stage fights at his family home in Essex.

The idea is for boxing to be staged on the lawn at Matchroom HQ.

This building is actually the Brentwood mansion where Hearn grew up as a child. It has since been converted into their office and will now be reused once again.

TalkSPORT’s Tour Of Matchroom HQ with Promoter Eddie Hearn

Eddie Hearn intends there to be a lot of drama in the production

Eddie Hearn

Eddie Hearn intends there to be a lot of drama in the production

Starting in July, Hearn plans to stage shows broadcast on Sky Sports and DAZN from the garden under the title “Matchroom Fight Camp”.

Hearn said: “This is now our head office in Brentwood. We have a beautiful land there and it has been very fortunate for us as a family. My dad moved there from Dagenham originally when he did a few books and that was very lucky for us.

“The restart of our project is to stage boxing live from the garden with an awning. You’ve heard of Madison Square Garden and this is the new garden.

“We’ve been talking about boxing in the studio and there are a lot of people doing it. I just feel like when you talk about a gladiatorial sport, like boxing, you have to create that moment, that energy, not just for the viewer at home but also for the fighter.

“We have big plans. It looks fantastic. There is still a long way to go. I think it’s 90 percent for us. Anything can happen at any time.

Jermall Charlo Joins Eddie Hearn’s Live Instagram

“There is a hotel down the road that we are going to take again. On Wednesday, before Saturday, everyone will introduce themselves. Fighters, Sky team, corners, our team will all be tested in one facility.

“You don’t specifically walk into the hotel, you walk into a side building and get tested, then you get your key, go into your room and don’t leave until you get the results.

“Once you get negative results, you are allowed to enter the Matchroom Battle Camps. We create a sterile environment. No one is allowed to interact with anyone outside of the combat camp during this time.

“The problem with this virus is that people are still learning. We have a dozen calls a day with doctors and testing centers. It is such a mountain to climb.

“We’re going to have about 90 people there and everyone will be tested before entering the facility.”

Hearn added that it would be a big miss not to have fans watching the fights live, but the sport will take on a new dimension during this time.

He added: “Yes that would be (a big lack of not having fans). At times like this the sport has to recognize the fans. Sometimes with your hands up you forget how much fans are important in these sports, especially in football.

“The good thing about boxing is because of the intensity and the drama we’ve seen with the UFC, you see a whole new dimension on the TV show. You see the noise, those 10oz leather gloves land on the opponent’s chin. You hear the body shots, the grunts and they go back around the corner.

“For me, if you gave me the choice, in front of the 90,000 fans, Sweet Caroline, that’s what makes the atmosphere and what makes the sport. But you have to manage the hand that has been dealt to you.

“We have about six months, I believe, we’re going to have to deal with a new product for the fans that is going to be released around the world.

Dillian Whyte could fight Alexander Povetkin in July at Matchroom HQ

Mark Robinson / Matchroom

Dillian Whyte could fight Alexander Povetkin in July at Matchroom HQ

“That’s why part of the idea of ​​staging it outside in the garden, fireworks, drones, is actually to build a TV show that when you turn on the TV, you don’t see the four walls of a dark studio, you see this amphitheater of a gladiatorial sport.

“It’s going to be a different kind of broadcast and it’s going to be intriguing. It will be one of the few sports to be intrigued behind closed doors.

“When you have a fighter rubbing his neck and about to come out in front of 80,000 and you open the curtain and you can imagine the heart pounding.

“Imagine if all of a sudden you walk out and there is no one there. These fights are really important for their careers. They need to get the adrenaline pumping and have the intensity to achieve peak performance. “

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