By Mark Vester & Thomas Schlabe
Since Friday, BoxingScene.com has been breaking the details on the hottest story in boxing - Showtime's super middleweight tournament, which involves IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham, WBA super middleweight champion Mikkel Kessler, former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain Taylor, undefeated contender Andre Ward, undefeated contender Andre Dirrell and WBC super middleweight champion Carl Froch.
The round robin format will feature a point system. A fighter will receive three points for a knockout win, two points for a decision win and no points for a loss. After the tourney bouts are over, the two fighters with the lowest scores will get dropped and the four with the highest will move on to the semi-finals and the two winners will meet in a final bout.
Some have wondered how Showtime could afford such a tournament on their own. It appears the tournament is not a one-network operation. According to overseas pundits Jorg Lubrich and Dietmar Kreft, several television networks are involved - including ARD (Germany), SKY Sports (UK), Viasat (Denmark) and Showtime (America) taking the lead role on the project. The entire tournament project will cost around $50,000,000 million dollars after everything is said and done. An entire plan has mapped out to cover the costs by the television networks involved.
It’s being said that the actual tournament idea was created by Kalle Sauerland, son of Sauerland Event owner Wilfried Sauerland. The elder Sauerland brought the idea to Showtime executives and worked out the presentation and sold all of the involved parties [promoters Gary Shaw, Lou DiBella, Mick Henessey, Dan Goossen] on the concept.
If everything is finalized, a tentative press conference date is already scheduled for July 13 at New York's Madison Square Garden. All of the fighters involved are going to be present for this press conference. There will be a press conference tour with the fighters, and tour stops will include London, Copenhagen and Berlin.
One of the first fights of the tournament, Arthur Abraham vs. Jermain Taylor on October 10 [Click Here For More Bouts], will likely take place at Anschutz Group’s O2 World in Berlin, which seats 14,000.
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