Danny Flexen describes 3 reasons why he believes two-weight world champ Billy Joe Saunders has joined Eddie Hearn and Matchroom
In around an hour one of the worst-kept secrets in UK boxing will be confirmed as two-weight world champion Billy Joe Saunders, the current WBO ruler at 168lbs, officially joins Eddie Hearn and Matchroom, shortly after leaving career-long promoter Frank Warren.
Below I detail the main three reasons why I believe Saunders made the big move.
1. The opponents
Fellow super-middleweight belt-holder Callum Smith, whose team flatly rejected an offer to face Saunders when he was promoted by Warren, is under the same Matchroom umbrella. Longtime targets Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin are both broadcast by DAZN, with whom Hearn has strong links and whose fights, Box Office attractions aside, are shown by them in the US. Three potential megafights for Saunders have this immediately become easier to make.
2. The Sky machine
BT Sport have already made great strides since entering boxing in a significant way, but Sky Sports are the veteran boxing broadcaster and an experienced, well-oiled marketing machine. Saunders can now expect to be covered extensively on Sky Sports News, appear on the Toe2Toe podcast and other shoulder programming and even get slots on the likes of Soccer AM. His profile, often overshadowed by Saunders’ own misdemeanours, should grow as a result and along the right trajectory.
3. Pay per view money
Despite BT entering the Box Office market, the Josh Warrington vs Carl Frampton card remains its only UK-based ppv offering. Sky tend to stage 4-5 Box Office events per year and someone of Saunders’ standing - and holding a world title - will likely appear on a few of them. This will no doubt boost his bank balance and overall status.