For decades, HBO has been one the premier destinations for the airing of boxing matches. I think most of us can remember going over to a friends house to watch the big match because they have HBO. But now, after 45 years, HBO has announced they will be dropping their coverage of boxing events by the end of 2018.
“Our mission at HBO Sports is to elevate the brand. We look for television projects that are high-profile, high-access, and highly ambitious in the stories they seek to tell and the quality of production in telling them,” HBO said in their official statement. “Boxing has been part of our heritage for decades. During that time, the sport has undergone a transformation. It is now widely available on a host of networks and streaming services. There is more boxing than every being televised and distributed. In some cases, this programming is very good. But from an entertainment point of view, it’s not unique.”
“Going forward in 2019, we will be pivoting away from programming live boxing on HBO,” the statement continued. “As always, we will remain open to looking at events that fit our programming mix. This could include boxing, just not for the foreseeable future. We’re deeply indebted to the many courageous fighters whose careers we were privileged to cover.”
In the end, the decision does not come as much of a surprise, at least to fans of the sport. HBO Sports has been slowly giving less and less attention to boxing over the years. Mostly due to the increase in coverage of the sport by ESPN and cable rival Showtime. There is also the case of DAZN, the newly released streaming service that is already airing some of the most important and best fights on a weekly basis.
Most recently, on September 8, the network aired a junior bantamweight title eliminator match between Felipe Orucuta and Juan Francisco Estrada. The event was dubbed “Superfly 3,” but it was anything but super. The event drew an average audience of 298,000 viewers. Their lowest viewership of a boxing event ever. Now do you understand why they dropping the sport altogether?!
“There have been hundreds of dedicated and remarkably creative men and women who have delivered the best in television production for HBO’s coverage of boxing and we are so grateful for their contributions,” they added in the statement. “It has been a wonderful journey chronicling the careers and backstories of so many spectacularly talented prizefighters.
“We are a storytelling platform. The future will see unscripted series, long-form documentary films, reality programming, sports journalism, event specials and more unique standout content from HBO Sports. We are constantly evaluating our programming to determine what resonates with our subscribers. Our audience research clearly shows the type of programming our subscribers embrace. For HBO Sports, it’s programming that viewers can’t find elsewhere.”
And boxing fans can certainly find matches elsewhere. And they will continue to do so after this announcement! If anything, I’d just like to extend congratulations with any service that had previously competed with HBO for viewers. You earned all those new viewers! Well done.a
From Sand to Ice: World’s Most Beautiful Horse Race Courses
Dubai is known to be a luxurious place where only the richest of the rich can afford. It is no wonder that Dubai also houses one of the most prestigious racecourses in the world! Dubai’s Meydan Racecourse is located beside the first five-star hotel in the area alongside a museum and several high-end restaurants. The grandstand boasts of an impressive mile-long track that can host more than 60,000 spectators. Did I mention that it also boasts of a rooftop infinity pool?
Dubai is known to host one of the most prestigious racehorses globally, the Grade 1 Dubai World Cup.
St., Moritz, Switzerland
Switzerland is home to one of the best ski resorts in the world. It is a perfect and scenic spot for winter sport with the alps and its majestically cold weather. And yes, maybe including horse racing. The White Turf Event is one of the most anticipated horse racing events for three long days each year. It is not your typical horse racing event. Since racers are required to race through in freezing weather, special equipment and paraphernalia are needed to ensure that both the rider and the horse are safe as they race through the majestic backdrop of the Engadin mountains in icy lakes. This spectacular event draws more than 30,000 spectators to witness this exciting horse race.
Flemington Racecourse, Australia
Australia is known to have wild, flamboyant colors and exciting culture. This is why this reflects in the Flemington racecourse, which is probably one of the world’s oldest racecourses. The renovated venue reflects Australia’s rich culture through its loud colors that mimic the vibrant energy that Australia brings. Filled with bright oranges, reds, yellows, and greens, the racecourse is a sight to see!
Piazza del Campo, Italy
Italy is known to be one of the most famous tourist spots in the world with its majestic architectural wonders and rich history. Piazza del Campo is simply no exception to the majesty that Italy brings. The Palio di Siena horse race hosts two events every year, and the place is so rich with history that the place dates back to ancient medieval times when buffalos were used to race instead of horses! Some critics have dubbed the Palio di Siena horse race track as one of the most challenging and difficult horse race track courses globally.
Happy Valley, Hong Kong
Hong Kong is known for shopping and its famous skyscrapers and home to a rather spectacular racecourse called the Happy Valley racecourse. It is located right smack in the center with remarkable buildings and architectural wonders surrounding the racecourse. It can host more than 50,000 spectators and have lots of fun activities such as a beer garden, live music, and entertainment between races.
From Gymnastics to Parkour: Silke Sollfrank Gained her Freedom From Competitive Sport
Silke Sollfrank has grown up as a competitive professional gymnast. Consequently, she was not very happy and got tired of the pressure of competition and the rules of the sport.
This all changed when she was introduced to the freestyle world of parkour. She noted that she has more freedom of movement than worrying about her toes, pointing all the time.
Parkour is a training discipline that entails jumping, running, and climbing around urban landscapes. In a public statement, Sollfrank said that she needs to set her limits and focus on her movement rather than comparing herself to other people.
She also added that she was constantly comparing herself to other women when she was doing gymnastics and trying to become better and exceed their talent and skills.
“Parkour kind of slapped me in the face and showed me: ‘This is not this is not what you want.'”
When she immersed herself in parkour in the year 2015, she had never looked back. Today, the 23-year-old has competed in the world’s biggest parkour competitions. She made her debut at the Aurora Games in New York and made the podium in the Red Bull Art of Motion in 2019.
Besides collaborating in the Netflix show coined “Ultimate Beastmaster,” she was also the last woman standing in her Ninja Warrior Germany journey. Also, she was the only woman in the 15-member parkour group of Ashigaru. Today, she wants to invite and encourage more individuals to follow in her footsteps and take up parkour’s freestyle movement.
“Doesn’t matter how old you are, doesn’t matter what gender you are, as long as you can see that you enjoy movement, that you enjoy challenging yourself.” She also admitted that she had struggled but fortunately overcame her fear of heights to compete further.
“There shouldn’t be any fears of starting because everyone starts at their own level. Some people might have a lot of body experience and start at a higher level. Some people don’t know about anything, would like to know how to do parkour and they start from zero. And that’s totally fine.”
Louisiana State University Fans Expected To Be The Majority In The CFP Crowd In New Orleans
Based on data by VividSeats, the crowd will be overruled by mostly purple and blue at the CFP championship held at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.
This forecast is backed by a series of data points that include the location of ticket buyers. Also, the expected amount of LSU fans is anticipated to get higher as prices start to decrease.
Meanwhile, the Clemson fans are also expected to turn out as their fan base is quite similar to the travel associated with a championship game.
According to SeatGeek and StubHub, online ticket marketplaces indicate that average prices have begun to fall after the CFP semifinals between LSU and Oklahoma, Clemson, and Ohio State which happened Peach Bowl and Fiesta Bowl.
It’s going down
As of January 2, 2020, the average selling price of a get-in ticket on Stubhub is at $1,972, while their cheapest ticket is at $981. On that data alone, 34% of all CFP ticket-buyers on StubHub were located in Louisiana. Ticket-buyers on Texas, on the other hand, came up the second largest with 16% as South Carolina came in third with 6%.
Based on another data from Seatgeek from December 30, 2019, with a minimum price of tickets at $2,174 and a get-ticket is at $1,191. 24% of the sold tickets are hailing from Louisiana, 17% in Texas, 9% in Georgia, 8% in South Carolina, and 6% in North Carolina.
Ticket prices feel to about $2,300 by New Year’s Eve, and as of January 8, 2020, the prices reached its lowest point at an average of $2,000 with a get-in rate under a thousand dollars for the first time.
Regardless of the plummeting ticket prices, the game is likely to be one of the most expensive title games.
The College Football Playoff Championship Game starts at 7 p.m. on January 13, 2020.
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