It’s not me, it’s you – Eddie Hearn claims he left Ryan Burnett


Eddie Hearn has claimed that he and Matchroom Boxing were unwilling to extend Ryan Burnett‘s association with the outfit, thus confirming his exit.

It was announced earlier this week following a period of speculation that Burnett had signed with U.S. giant Top Rank as he looks to rebuild following his freak injury defeat to Nonito Donaire in the quarter-finals of the World Boxing Super Series.

However, Hearn has revealed that he had the opportunity to continue working with Burnett but turned this down.

The English promoter gave his side in an interview with IFL TV today.

Hearn said that Burnett “took the fight in the World Boxing Super Series – he got injured in that.”

“Adam [Booth, Burnett’s coach and manager] came to me and said ‘do you have an offer for Ryan?’ and we didn’t make him an offer,” he revealed before stating that there are no hard feelings between the parties.

“[Booth] kept me up to speed with everything, Ryan texted me the other day, we wished him all the best, I think it’s a good opportunity for him.”

Specifics are unclear, but it would seem that Hearn was unwilling to match Top Rank’s offer, whatever that may have been rather than him outright refusing to continue working with Burnett and Top Rank subsequently swooping in.

26-year-old Burnett recently came under the MTK Global banner after Booth’s stable became a part of the outfit – who also have a new association with Top Rank.

The former unified bantamweight champion returns to the ring on Friday May 17th when he headlines a bill at the Ulster Hall, taking on Filipino Jelbirt Gomera for the WBC International super bantamweight rankings title.

The fight will be shown live on YouTube as well as on the ESPN+ app, a partner of Top Rank.

Burnett fought on eight Matchroom shows since late 2015 when Eddie Hearn secured his signature, seemingly stealing in ahead of Frank Warren who had looked set to sign the Antrim Road talent.

With the U.K. giant Burnett won British and IBF and WBA world titles, headlining two big bills at the SSE Odyssey Arena in his home city and also featuring prominently in two major pay-per-view events.

The departure looks to signal the end of Hearn’s immediate involvement in Belfast.

The two Burnett-led shows in 2017, supported by big fights for MHD Promotions boxers, looked to signal a fresh start in the Titanic City for Matchroom but Burnett would then appear on the Joshua v Parker undercard in Cardiff before entering the WBSS.

The stable now features three Irish fighters, unified lightweight queen Katie Taylor, the recently deposed super bantamweight titlist TJ Doheny, and super featherweight challenger Jono Carroll – all of who look unlikely to fight at home in the near future.

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie