By Terence Dooley
Loaded TV launched their boxing coverage on Friday night when broadcasting Brian Rose’s British light-middleweight win over Sam Webb live from Blackpool’s Winter Gardens venue. Loaded are on Sky channel 200, they are free-to-air to Sky subscribers and have brought in Frank Maloney as their boxing consultant. The diminutive promoter immediately asked Loaded to pick up the Rose-Webb fight, which was put together by VIP Promotions, after boxing fans took to Twitter to ask why the fight was not on British TV.
“I want to mix up the shows and work with all promoters to give them a chance because I know what it is like when you’re out there and struggling,” said Maloney when speaking to BoxingScene about his latest role. “This is Steve Wood’s [who heads VIP Promotions] first solo TV show in 15-years, so it is a great result and a great fight to launch with.
“This was all put together in less than one week. This deal with Loaded was supposed to come together in January, but when I see this fight wasn’t on other TV stations, and I saw people talking it on Twitter, I phoned Loaded and told them they had to take this fight as it was a great fight to go with. Loaded took one hour to make the decision and put it all into place.
“We want to challenge the big boys, we’ll have our own magazine show, buy fights from abroad and it is going to give opportunities to fighters and promoters. I will talk to everyone, if they’ve got fights then submit them to me and we’ll give them the opportunity.”
He added: “This arose because Sky have cut back on boxing, they put all their eggs in one basket [when handing Matchroom boxing all their TV dates], but we’re opening the doors to everyone and fingers crossed it makes things a bit more competitive. What people forget is that Loaded has magazines out there. They will cross-market the sport and fighters, and that will be a benefit.
“The other good thing is that this is free-to-air as long as you pay for Sky, which is our big selling point because it means that we’re free to all Sky subscribers. Hopefully we’ll give people a run for their money and work out some big world title fights.”
However, Maloney’s heavyweight hope David Price will remain on BoxNation. The Liverpudlian beat Matt Skelton in two rounds last month and the BBBoC have ordered the 29-year-old to defend his British title against Tyson Fury, who has exclusively told BoxingScene that he will not challenge for his former belt. Price, 15-0 (13 KOs), now looks set to take on America’s Tony Thompson at Liverpool’s Echo Arena on February 23.
“Price is contracted to BoxNation, he will fight on February 23 against Tony Thompson at the Echo Arena and the tickets go on sale next week,” said Maloney. “By the end of 2013, big David will be ready for the world title, Loaded will be going along nicely and I won’t be thinking of retirement.”
Fury, 20-0 (14), and Maloney have waged a war of words in recent weeks. Maloney has apologised for his remarks towards Fury, but admitted that he took the liberty of giving the 6’ 9’’ heavyweight contender a wide berth when the heavyweight showed up at the Winter Gardens on Friday night.
“I stay out the way of Tyson because I don’t want to get involved in all that,” he said. “If they want to make the fight then it has gone out to purse bids from the Boxing Board of Control, so if they want the fight they’ll go for it or pull out. We’d do the fight, even with an instant rematch if they wanted one.”
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