The building wasn’t over-flowing with rabid boxing fans Saturday night at the Nassau Coliseum, the second boxing event held at the refurbished joint run by the Barclays Center gang.
The announced attendance was 6,921, there to see a main event topped by Danny Jacobs against Luis Arias, with the chief support bout of Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller against Mariusz Wach, and a bout featuring local hero Cletus “The Hebrew Hammer” against Roberto Ortiz.
The July 2017 boxing opener had an announced butts in seats tally of 7,492, and was topped by a Robert Guerrero versus Omar Figueroa tango. That was a PBC event, and Lou DiBella’s DiBella Entertainment held the promoter license. Saturday, Eddie Hearn, a Brit fixture making in his initial incursion into US territory, did the lead promotion with an assist from Salita Promotions.
I asked Hearn early Sunday morning, as the post-fight press conference edged toward the 2:30 AM mark, if he was happy with the crowd in Uniondale.
“Yeah, it was alright,” Hearn said. “Six nine two something like that. I mean, we had some comps, and that’s a big problem with your culture here. A lot of people get free tickets. The sport’s not big enough to sustain regular activity in the States… In this state, if you look at the activity, you had Charlo October 14th, you had Deontay Wilder last week, Danny Jacobs tonight, you’ve got Kovalev in two weeks, Cotto the week after, you’ve got Lomachenko versus Rigo the week after that. I mean it’s a lot of shows. If that was in London, you’d be bombing. I was reasonably pleased. I think you’re doing well, really.”
He also saw that the Long Island crowd wasn’t hyped like a Brooklyn crowd. “That’s why I was quite pleased with the numbers. I felt like we were up against it tonight and everyone was praying for it to be like two thousand. I saw the one in Newark (WBSS), the cruiserweight tournament, that got a couple of thousand.” Really, did he really think that low a number was possible? He shrugged. “It’s hard! Long Island is not Manhattan, it’s not Brooklyn. You know what it’s like at Barclays Center. You can be outside the Barclays Center and it’s a vibrant place. There’s foot traffic. Whereas here, it’s kind of in the middle..it’s an unbelievable facility. But without Brooklyn Boxing driving the show like they did, we would have struggled here tonight.”
End part one…
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