Sunday, April 19, 2009

Pinoy Pride

The Flash and the Furious was an ambitious boxing promotion taken on by Solar Sports at the Araneta Coliseum. Since the "Thrilla in Manila" was staged in 1975, very few boxing events have met any success in Manila. It was after all, the first time we were going to have two bonafide World Titles at stake in one card.

We already had to postpone the fight mainly because of sponsor requests. Many detractors took pot shots at Solar as a company having financial difficulty because of it.

But then, it all came together. I'm thankful some sponsors took the risk (and it definitely paid off!). Even our non sponsors wanted some tickets last minute to watch the fight. The tickets sales started to pick up. The media coverage gained momentum. Most of our on ground plans to mobilize tickets sales worked. I have a feeling the ratings will also be better than expected.

And of course, the Pinoy boxers cooperated by submitting back to back to back world class performances. Denver Cuello got the WBC International Minimumweight Crown. Brian Viloria gave the performance of his life and dethroned Ulysses Solis. And Nonito Donaire, Jr. was impressive in his domination of challenger Raul Martinez.

Everything worked out. The one month postponement turned out to be the right decision. A world class event that highlights the Filipino's boxing talent was showcased at the Araneta.

Thank you to all who made it happen.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Triple Assault

If you're a Filipino boxer not named Manny Pacquiao, you would be hard pressed to get the attention you deserve in your own country let alone the rest of the world.  The Pacman has dominated the consciousness of Filipinos and boxing fans that others who are in the vicinity gets lost in overwhelmed with the exposure Manny gets.

We arguably have the three (3) best weeks of Philippine boxing ever lined up from April 19 to May 3 this year.  Four (4) World Title fights are happening (would have been 5 if Lluevano didn't injured against Concepcion) in the span of two weeks.  Donaire, Viloria, Penalosa and of course Pacquiao are all fighting for World Championships with Donaire and Viloria doing it right at the Araneta Coliseum.  

If you love boxing, then these 3 weekends are going to be heaven.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

UAAP TV Rights

It seems we (Solar) really can't avoid crossing paths with ABS-CBN when it comes to sports television broadcasts.  They are a giant network with deep pockets and vast resources who want to be a big player in the business.  It's just the way it is.

The UAAP rights are no exception.  In my opinion, 90% of all basketball sponsorship money are placed in three leagues.  The PBA, the NBA and the UAAP.  Solar beat ABS with the PBA bid last year.  ABS failed in an attempt to carve out a portion of the Solar's NBA contract the year prior after BTV was booted out of Sky Cable.  That leaves the UAAP as the third league who eats up from that sponsorship pie.

It seems that ABS-CBN will be getting another chance to bid this month after their first attempt last Feb.  Maybe they underestimated the competition (GMA and Solar submitted separate proposals) once again.  Or maybe they forgot to mention some things when they first did it.  But they are going to be given another chance to "re bid".  I don't understand why they have to bid again given that they have the right of first refusal anyway.  All they have to do is match the highest bidder.  Was the UAAP not satisfied with their bid that they are doing it again?  Are they privy to the other two bidders proposals so they can match or exceed?

No matter what happens with the TV contract, the UAAP will be the clear winner with the rights fee being much higher this time around.