Hearn says ‘Pure’ Katie Taylor brings boxing back into the light

‘Pure’ Katie Taylor is the perfect tonic for a sport that has been dragged through the mud over the last few weeks, says Eddie Hearn.

The Matchroom boss has had a tough time of it of late, dealing with the Conor Benn failed drug test saga and all the criticisms that came with trying to ensure the Brit’s fight with Chris Eubank Jr went ahead.

With that in mind answering questions on Irish Icon, Taylor is a delight, as he can rest assured she is a positive topic of conversation.

Hearn argues Taylor is a ‘shining example’ in a sport muddied by business interests and suggests, the fact she steps into the spotlight in Wembley Arena live on Dazn this weekend, will see a positive light shined back the way of the sweet science.

In fact, Hearn went as far as to state the ‘shining example’ is proof that the sport, which has been in the media for doping violations and criticized for bad matchmaking of late, is indeed ‘great’.

Speaking to the press at the media workout ahead of her latest undisputed lightweight defence against Argentina’s Karen Elizabeth Carabajal at Wembley, Hearn suggested Taylor could prove boxing’s knight in shining armour this weekend.

“One of the problems you have commercially with Katie Taylor is the last thing she’s ever going to be is a sellout. She’s turned down millions of pounds worth of endorsements over the years. She just won’t do it. We’ve taken endorsements to her over the years for this brand and that brand and she is like, ‘no not for me’,” he said.

“I’m thinking ‘no no what about the commission’ but on a serious note, she’s purer than they come. That’s one of the beauties of Katie Taylor. People say maybe she could do more from a publicity point or more commercially, but why not embrace the fact that she’s not willing to do that? That’s really the selling point for me, you’ve got this unbelievable individual that’s so driven by just the sport alone and after a tough couple of weeks in boxing she’s a shining example of why this sport is so great.”

The Essex has also spoke about why he didn’t put Taylor on top of an all-female fight card before Boxxer managed to do it with Claressa Shields and Savanah Marshall earlier this month.

The reason? Simple, Taylor objected strongly.

“It was about two years ago and DAZN came to us and said, ‘We’d like to headline Katie Taylor on International Women’s Day with a full female card,” Hearn told talkSPORT

April 30, 2022; New York, NY, USA; Eddie Hearn, Chairman of Matchroom Sport, hugs Katie Taylor after she defeated Amanda Serrano (not pictured) in their bout at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom.

“I was really excited. I thought, ‘Wow, that would be incredible for Katie and the sport. I went and sat down with her, and she looked at me like she was going to knock me out.”

September 26, 2022; Hartford, CT, USA; Katie Taylor trains for her upcoming fight against Karen Elizabeth Carbajal. The two will meet on October 29th at Wembley Arena in London. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom.

After a lifetime of fighting to compete alongside men, the undisputed lightweight champion explained to Hearn that she has no interest in such an event.

“And she said, ‘I don’t want to box on an all-female card. I want to headline a card. Forget male or female, just because I’m good enough, I’m entertaining enough and because of my achievements,” he added.

“I really took a lot from that. The great thing to take away from women’s boxing is that it is there in its own right. For many, many years it’s been politically correct to make sure that we showcase women’s sports.”

Photo Credit Mark Robinson, Ed Mullholland Matchroom

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com