Usually routine mandatory title defenses don’t turn into utter circuses like Teofimo Lopez vs. George Kambosos Jr, but such is the reality when Triller is involved.
After numerous postponements and other tomfoolery, Triller Fight Club is no longer going to promote the lightweight championship bout. Mike Coppinger reported that the IBF ruled Triller to be in default of its deposit, which means Matchroom Boxing will now get the rights to the fight and that also means Lopez and Kambosos will see their (still career-high) purses reduced.
IBF rules Triller has forfeited its $1.2 million deposit, which will be split 75/25 in Teofimo’s favor. Matchroom Boxing bid $3,506,000 in February. 65 percent of that goes to Lopez.
Lopez: $2,278,900 (plus 900K from Triller)
Kambosos: $1,227,100 (plus 300K) https://t.co/2XkE7d6Xol
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) October 6, 2021
Triller won the purse bid with an audacious $6 million offer, beating out both Matchroom Boxing (DAZN) and Top Rank Boxing (ESPN, and also Lopez’s promoter, which wasn’t interested in spending a lot for this fight at all). It signified Triller’s interest in being a major player in boxing beyond just celebrity exhibitions, but everything about the handling of this fight has been a disaster.
We’ll spare you the deep timeline of everything but when this bout was pushed from October 4th to 16th, Kambosos’ team wanted more money to accommodate this ridiculous request given tickets were already on sale for the Oct. 4 date. Triller had an Oct. 17 deadline to make this fight happen but opted to just take the L, having lost $9-10 million in promoting the event (per Triller COO Thorstein Meier).
Triller wanted the IBF, which mandated the title fight, to rule Kambosos’ team in default and have a new purse bid for the next highest ranked contender, Isaac Cruz. Obviously, that didn’t work out and it’s Triller Fight Club in default and out of a lot of money.
In case you’re wondering, Triller is still having a boxing card on Oct. 16 in Brooklyn, headlined by Cletus Seldin and William Silva. In the immediate and probably the long-term, their credibility is completely out the window with how this has been handled.
I suppose the good news here is Lopez vs. Kambosos has gone from a potential $50 PPV to being on DAZN, which is $20 per month in the US, but generally cheaper in other parts of the world.
Lopez did recently re-sign with Top Rank Boxing so once this title fight is finally done and dusted, Teofimo will return to the ESPN family of networks for the foreseeable future.
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