Golden Boy, Fox extend rights deal

Updated: April 8, 2013, 4:05 PM ET
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com

Golden Boy Promotions and Fox Sports announced on Monday that they have extended their contract for the promoter to continue providing fights to various Fox platforms, but with an increase in the number of annual events and the addition of live Monday night boxing.

The two-year deal, which could extend to four years with options, will see the number of events rise from 36 to 48 annually.

Currently, the "Golden Boy Live" series airs live fights on Saturday nights on regional Fox Sports Net affiliates as well as being simulcast in Spanish on Fox Deportes with most of the fights coming from Mexico. But under the extension, 24 shows will emanate from venues in the United States and air on Monday nights on Fox Sports 1, Fox Sports' new, national sports cable network that was announced in March and launches Aug. 17 in approximately 90 million homes. It will replace the Speed Channel.

Boxing will be among several sports, including UFC, Major League Baseball, college football and basketball, NASCAR and soccer, that FS1 will broadcast. The Monday night cards will also air live on Fox Deportes.

"This is prime-time Monday nights for live boxing. It's fantastic," Golden Boy chief executive Richard Schaefer told ESPN.com. "This is huge for us and huge for boxing fans to have a major network making this kind of commitment to boxing. This is not going to be fights that are hidden away on tape delay or late night. This is prime time and there are license fees attached to the shows. This is not a time buy, so there is a commitment to boxing on both sides."

The other 24 shows will still take place on Saturday nights in Mexico and air live on Fox Deportes.

The date for the first show has not been determined, but Schaefer said it would likely be "shortly after" the launch of FS1.

"Golden Boy Promotions has developed a great reputation over the last several years for putting together exciting cards with top-flight fighters," Patrick Crakes, a Fox Sports senior vice president, said in a statement. "It's great that we've been able to build upon and expand what has already been a fruitful relationship that benefits multiple networks in the FOX Sports family, domestically and internationally."

Schaefer said that in addition to the shows outlined in the agreement that "Fox made it clear to us that they would like to get bigger events as well. We told them that to get them they have to look at seven-figure license fees and they didn't shy away from that. That they are interested to buy bigger fights and want to become a player is great for boxing."