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For Golden Boy Promotions, Margarito-Mosley Is Big Business, Affliction MMA Is Not

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On the conference call today to promote Saturday night's Oscar De La Hoya-Manny Pacquiao fight, I asked Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer whether he could confirm that Golden Boy will promote both the Affliction MMA show and the Antonio Margarito-Shane Mosley boxing match on the night of January 24.

Schaefer's answer served as a reminder that for Golden Boy, boxing is big business, whereas MMA is just a side activity.

"I don't want to talk about it right now," Schaefer said. "We're still trying to finalize it. The one thing I know for sure is that Antonio Margarito and Sugar Shane Mosley will be fighting on January 24."

I don't blame Schaefer at all for not wanting to get into fights that are eight weeks away when he's trying to promote a fight that's five days away. But the way he declined to say anything about Affliction, while making sure to mention the date of the Margarito-Mosley fight, made me think that he considers Affliction a very low priority.

And really, why shouldn't he? Golden Boy Promotions is an extremely successful organization in boxing: It will do more than a million pay-per-view buys for Saturday night's De La Hoya-Pacquiao fight, and it has a lucrative relationship with HBO to broadcast Margarito-Mosley and other fights.

Affliction, on the other hand, has managed to promote just one MMA card and had to cancel its second. The way Schaefer said, "We're still trying to finalize it," indicates that Golden Boy thinks the upcoming Affliction show's date is tentative, despite what Affliction itself is advertising. Although the main event for its Day of Reckoning show -- Andrei Arlovski vs. Fedor Emelianenko -- is a very good fight, there's no reason to believe that Affliction will be a profitable MMA promotion in the long run.

I talked to Schaefer about MMA in October and found him to be knowledgeable about the sport and genuinely interested in giving fans good MMA fights. But for now he's a boxing promoter, not an MMA promoter.

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