Impact Network International reveal sensational Dublin plans – calls for BUI to re-open talks

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is liffey-crane-hire-1.jpg

Impact Network International have shared their massive plans for Irish and Dublin boxing in particular with Irish-boxing.com.

Yesterday we broke news of plans to run a show in the National Stadium on April 25th – which would have been headlined by Austin Trout versus Tyrone Nurse and populated by an Irish undercard.

Today the people behind Impact Network International got in touch to explain what they hope to bring to the Irish boxing scene.

The April 25th show won’t now play out in the National Stadium as first planned and could move to Belfast or across the water as the show wasn’t sanctioned by the Boxing Union of Ireland.

However, the promotional outfit told Irish-boxing.com they remain keen to work with the BUI and are dead set on reviving, even revolutionizing, Irish boxing.

Andreya Taylor, a Dubliner based in America, hopes to bring the Impact Network boxing series recently launched in America to these shores and has plans for regular shows.

Impact Network, one of the largest faith-based television networks in the United States, moved beyond traditional religious offerings and entered the televised sports arena with its first ever professional boxing show on February 1st.

They promoted and broadcast a show topped by Austin Trout, who was supported by  Alonzo “Big Zo” Butler, Abel Mendoza and ‘a full slate of local talent’ on the non-televised portion of the card. A second show has been confirmed stateside for March 7 and hope to broadcast 60 hours of boxing to a potential American audience of 91 million households.

The network and promotional outfit is fronted by veteran television producer, Steven Marcano.

Marcano’s previous televised boxing experience includes producing three seasons of the “Knockout” reality show

As part of its boxing initiative, Impact has charged Marcano with creating a new reality series dubbed “Champions and Stars” that will feature many of the fighters that are showcased on Impact’s boxing programming. 

Working with Marcano and Impact, Taylor hopes to ensure Dublin plays a big part of the project.

According to Taylor, American names would top bills in Ireland at an almost impossible-to-believe rate – once every 12 weeks – with Irish fighters populating the undercards.

Taylor also claims the Irish fighters aligned to them and the network would fight in New York in between Irish fight dates.

She suggests shows would take place every six weeks alternating between Dublin and New York.

Impact Network International had hoped to kick start things as early as April of this year and had three full Dublin shows planned.

However, after consultation with the BUI the show has not been sanctioned.

At first glance it’s a massive blow for a sport crying out for shows outside of Belfast, but it also has to be understood Dublin boxing has had an abundance of self-proclaimed saviours over the years who have gone on to disappoint and disappear. It’s understood the BUI were eager to cooperate, but had concerns when some deadlines where not met.

Taylor assures all requirements can be met and defiantly claims none of the financial issues that have hampered Dublin boxing of late would be an issue.

She also called for BUI cooperation and stressed she is motivated by a desire to restore Irish boxing’s place as a top sport on the island.

“Money isn’t a issue when it comes to these shows,” Taylor told Irish-boxing.com.

“We have substantial sponsorship already sorted. You’ve got to understand this show will be broadcast into over 90 million homes in American.

“If I am honest if we can’t get sanctioned I don’t know who can. We understand the BUI have rules and processes that have to be followed, that’s a give, but we are willing to follow them. We are hopeful we can talk to them again and we can get this off the ground.”

“I am sure everyone will agree it is a positive for Irish boxing. I think it’s a shame Irish boxers can’t fight at home with things as they are. We want to change that.”

Taylor revealed the April show will most likely be moved to another ‘jurisdiction’, but is adamant everyone involved has their heart set on Dublin.

“I won’t give up on Dublin,” she adds. “There is a personal element to it. I want to help boxing in Ireland, why should somewhere else get the benefit of the American TV audience and the money. We have reached out because we don’t know where else to go. We hope we can re-open discussions with the BUI and get this done.”

It’s believed the initial Irish fighters being considered for shows are those training in St Michael’s Inchicore under Steven O’Rourke – who has a long-standing link to mooted headliner Nurse.

Steven O’Rourke will provide the matchmaking whilst Paul Meredith will manage the Irish fighters and be the promoter of the Irish shows.

dpg

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