By Lem Satterfield
Forgive Golden Boy Promotions' CEO Richard Schaefer if he sounds out of breath, for he's been an extremely busy man.
Not only are the fighters in his company winning at an alarming rate, but Schaefer has been landing one big deal after another, and, it seems, traveling from one side of the country or even out of the country for big match ups.
On Tuesday, Schaefor announced "Star Power," the promotional name bestowed upon the Sept. 17 return to the ring of 34-year-old six-time champion Floyd Mayweather (41-0, 25 KOs) against 24-year-old WBC welterweight king Victor Ortiz (29-2-2, 22 KOs).
"We just finalized [on Wednesday] the HBO deal for Mayweather-Ortiz, " said Schaefer, referring to story initially reported by ESPN that Golden Boy had reached an agreement with HBO pay per view network to broadcast Mayweather-Ortiz.
"I'm very happy with what we ended up with. HBO and Time Warner are going to put all of their different platforms and packages into play," said Schaefer. "It's going to be without a doubt the most heavily promoted event of all time. There is no question in my mind."
Schaefer said that the promotion will include features from HBO's parent company Time Warner, as well as assets from Turner Broadcasting and Time Magazine. Time Warner also governs online publications such as Sports Illustrated, People and Entertainment Weekly.
"In the coming weeks, there are going to be a lot of these promotional elements in play that are going to be announced," said Schaefer. "The promotion is going to be running from pretty much now until the night of the fight."
HBO's 24/7 series previews every pay per view fight, and will do the same for Mayweather-Ortiz through a wider range of exposure on the Turner's various networks, Schaefer said.
"You're going to have announcements of different promotional tools being used, many of them new to the sport of boxing," said Schaefer. "It's going to be interesting for fight fans, sports fans and the general public to really be part of that experience going into the fight."
The Mayweather-Ortiz touring festivities begin on Tuesday in New York, with an almost unheard of next-day stop in Los Angeles.
"I'm very, very busy and I'm going to be on tour in New York on Tuesday. We're all flying in on Sunday, and we have a lot of promotional activities on Monday. On Tuesday, we're going to do the press conference and fly back to Los Angeles on Tuesday night," said Schaefer.
"And then, on Wednesday, we'll have other promotional things lined up. On this Wednesday night, I think we will have one of the most exciting press conference we've ever had outdoors at LA Live," said Schaefer. "And then the following week, I'm going to be in England for David Haye versus Wladimir Klitschko. That means that I'm going to be gone for a week and a half."
The action follows what already has been a big year for Golden Boy Promotions, starting in March.
That's when Golden Boy's 20-year-old WBC junior middleweight belt-holder Saul Alvarez (37-0-1, 26 KOs) earned his crown with a unanimous decision over England's Matthew Hatton (41-5-2, 16 KOs).
In April, Ortiz rose from two knockdowns and scored two of his own during a unanimous decision that dethroned previously unbeaten WBC king Andre Berto (27-1, 21KOs).
In May, 46-year-old Bernard Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs) became the oldest fighter in the history of the sport to win a significant world title, dethroning Canada's 28-year-old Jean Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KOs) as WBC light heavyweight champion.
Hopkins-Pascal was a rematch of December's controversial majority draw when the former undisputed middleweight titlist from Philadelphia had appeared to have out-boxed Pascal for the victory despite having been twice floored during the bout.
Alvarez returned for a June 18 clash to dominate his 12th-round knockout in a mandatory defense of his crown against England's 34-year-old Ryan Rhodes (45-5, 31 KOs), whom he dropped in the fourth round.
On the Alvarez-Rhodes undercard, Golden Boy's 21-year-old super featherweight sensation Adrien Broner (21-0) scored his 17th knockout, ending with a first-round stoppage that dethroned 27-year-old NABF king Jason Litzau (28-3, 21 KOs).
On June 25, there is a non-title, junior welterweight match up between Golden Boy's 28-year-old Argentinian Lucas Matthysse (28-1, 26 KOs) against southpaw former WBC titlist Devon Alexander (21-1, 13 KOs) of promoter Don King.
Golden Boy also handles the American affairs of 30-year-old WBA heavyweight champion David Haye (25-1, 23 KOs), who on July 2 will pursue his 16th straight victory and his 14th knockout during that run against 34-year-old WBO, IBF and IBO counterpart Wladimir Klitschko (55-3, 49 KOs) in an attempt to end a 13-fight winning streak that includes 10 knockouts.
"Another big one is Lucas Matthysse, and then we have David Haye in Germany," said Schaefer. "I'm happy with the way things are coming along, and the way that our athletes are performing."
On July 9, Golden Boy Promotions is matching 28-year-old Cuban native Erislandy Lara (15-0-1, 10 KOs) in a clash of southpaws opposite 29-year-old former three-time champion Paul Williams (39-2, 27 KOs) on July 9.
On July 23, Golden Boy Promotions is has 24-year-old WBA junior welterweight champions Amir Khan (25-1, 17 KOs) of England going against 33-year-old Bronx native and southpaw IBF titlist Zab Judah (41-6, 28KOs) of Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas.
"The Khan-Judah fight is yet another big, major fight," said Schaefer.
On August 27, Golden Boy has 27-year-old WBA interim junior welterweight king Marcos Rene Maidana (30-2, 27 KOs) of Argentina against 28-year-old southpaw WBO and WBA interim lightweight king Robert Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 KOs), who has 13 straight wins, nine of them stoppages, and is attempting to win his sixth belt in a fourth weight class.
Then on Sept. 17, there is Mayweather-Ortiz, a deal that was struck in the wake of a settlement between Golden Boy Promotions and southpaw eight-division and WBO welterweight titlist Manny Pacquiao (53-3-2, 38 knockouts) of a lawsuit that could pave the way for a smoothed over working relationship between Golden Boy and Pacquiao's Top Rank Promotions' CEO Bob Arum.
"Adrien Broner looked sensational and Alvarez looked sensational. All of our athletes are doing fantastic, and we're very proud of them. Whenever you have athletes performing at that level, then you want to make sure that you can continue to keep them busy," said Schaefer.
"You want to move them forward and to continue to give them the kind of opportunities. You see these young kids advance, and that's huge part of it," said Schaefer. "You want to continue to give them the opportunities, and that's why I am so busy with ensuring that we get the necessary television dates and exposure."
Schaefer had said that if Alvarez, slated to return on Sept. 17, defeated Rhodes, he could potentially land on a pay-per-view undercard to Mayweather-Ortiz and, perhaps, face the Mayweather-Ortiz winner.
But Arum recently told ESPN.com that he would scrap plans for his 25-year-old Mexican WBC middleweight king Julio Cesar Chavez (43-0-1, 30 KOs) if it mean an opportunity to face Alvarez perhaps at a catchweight of 158 pounds that would allow Alvarez to keep his belt.
Although Schaefer said that he is willing to entertain Chavez-Alvarez, and, even Pacquiao-Alvarez, his schedule simply does not permit him to devote much thought to it.
"The fact is that we want to do that fight [Chavez-Alvarez,] and Canelo is scheduled to fight on Sept. 17," said Schaefer. "So I don't have time to get into these back-and-forths about it right now. I'm toos busy now with all my other fights, so I can't go and engage now in these other things."