Eddie Hearn has spoken about boxing’s lawlessness and the lack of “barriers to entry”.

Hearn was discussing problems in the sport alongside his rival promoter Oscar De La Hoya on DAZN, and said that peripheral figures can get in the way of the biggest deals being struck. 

“Boxing is a unique sport where there’s no barriers to entry,” said Hearn. “You could be dealing with a manager who has absolutely no experience of boxing, absolutely no experience of how to guide a fighter, and you’re locked in a tussle, trying to deliver for DAZN; trying to make the right fight for your business; trying to make the right fight for his career. It’s not easy.”

Hearn recognised that it is not always easy trying to make the major or the logical fights, but says that although promoters get a bad reputation, it’s not always down to them. 

“One of the incorrect perceptions is that promoters stop the fights,” Hearn started. “We want the biggest fights. One, because the biggest fights make the most money but, two, we don’t want to sit ringside, at a fight, knowing actually… One of the worst feelings I ever have is going to my own average show. 

“I don’t want to go to a show and go, ‘I can’t believe we’ve had to pay this guy X and he’s in a one-sided fight and do you know why? Because we got talked into it. We got talked into doing it’. 

“For me, the main focus of our business now is to stop, is to say ‘No’. And if we have to lose a fighter en route because we’re not delivering the best product for our broadcaster, we have to be prepared to do it.

“That’s one of the biggest challenges.” 

There is a part of the world, however, that boxing does find hard to say ‘No’ to, and that is Saudi Arabia.

Hearn insists it has become a vital part of his worldwide strategy, although he also knows it is crucial to maintain a strong presence and schedule in the UK.

“The first thing is, I hate, ‘You’re taking boxing away from the UK and America’,” Hearn explained. “There’s this thing – it’s called the world and Saudi Arabia sits in it. Our plan, along with DAZN, is global expansion. 

“So if there is money coming into the sport from a new region we need to embrace that. If that money is enabling us to see the fights that keep boxing great, even better. But we must still focus on other markets and particularly our domestic markets.

“Fights like [Artur] Beterbiev-[Dmitrii] Bivol that can get made instantly – I don’t think that fights would have got made without Saudi Arabia. [Tyson] Fury-[Oleksandr] Usyk wouldn’t have been made without Saudi Arabia, so we have to embrace it, because you can’t deny the fighters the opportunity and seeing the growth there first hand, it’s quite amazing, as a country.”