There is one thing you can almost guarantee will happen each week: an interview with Eddie Hearn circulating social media. He’s done a great job keeping himself relevant within boxing by consistently doing these media hits, whether fans like to see them or not. Recently, according to Boxing Scene, Hearn said that the fight between Jaime Munguia (42-0, 33 KOs) and Edgar Berlanga (21-0, 16 KOs) should be a “cinch (easy) to make.”
You would think it would be, as both Munguia and Berlanga’s promoters work for the same company, DAZN. But things haven’t been easy between Golden Boy Promotions’ Oscar De La Hoya and Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn. They’ve found ways to send not-so-pleasant messages on social media to each other, which go back to the time Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez left Golden Boy for Matchroom. It hasn’t been easy, but regardless of their personal feelings toward each other, this is business, and DAZN looks at it exactly that way. Hearn had implied as much when he mentioned during a recent interview that DAZN, in so many words, told both him and De La Hoya to put their differences aside and make it happen. It’s a fourth-quarter fight that would help justify the rising costs of their subscription and place a major fight as part of the fourth-quarter calendar for the company.
HOW DID WE GET HERE?
It’s simple: Berlanga was heavily courted by Hearn to come over to Matchroom/DAZN, with a Canelo Alvarez fight being the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. The only problem is that during fight week between Berlanga and Jason Quigley, news broke that Canelo had signed to Premier Boxing Champions, making a fight with him now an obstacle, or is it? Hearn strongly feels that he can still get the Canelo fight for Berlanga, but he has to have a signature win. The only way that happens is if he fights someone like Munguia, who has a large Mexican fanbase, and a victory over him would potentially force a fight with Canelo.
Conversely, Munguia came off a life-and-death type of fight with Sergiy Derevyanchenko in June. With no other big names at super middleweight, the fight with Berlanga makes sense, as Munguia has no intentions of returning to middleweight. It’s more risk than reward for Munguia, but Berlanga checks the box of a big-name opponent as the fans have been screaming for him to fight better opposition. Zanfer and Golden Boy must feel that this fight could put Munguia’s name into the Canelo sweepstakes for a fight down the road.
Regardless of the reasoning behind it, both men need this fight, and if it’s as easy as Hearn is saying, then we should be getting an announcement soon for a fight that will undoubtedly pack them in, whether in NYC or Southern California.