Shields-Marshall Promoter: ‘From a Financial Perspective It’s a Disaster’

The postponement of the Claressa Shields-Savannah Marshall card from September 10 due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II had heavy financial repercussions for its organizers and participants, according to the main promoter of the event.

Ben Shalom, director of Boxxer, which promotes both Shields and Marshall, felt that changing the original date of what was supposed to be a big day for women’s boxing was the right move, even if it spelled “disaster” for the financial aspect. Shalom is promoting the card, now rescheduled for October 15, along with Top Rank Inc. and Dmitry Salita. The card also features a notable women’s 130-pound unification fight between Americans Mikaela Mayer, the WBO/IBF champion, and Alycia Baumgardner, the WBC champion.

“We have lost more than anyone on this show,” Shalom said on BBC 5 Live Boxing. “From a financial perspective it is a disaster. When you get to a fight night like that, and this is an international fight night. It involves hundreds of people traveling from all over the world.

“However, when something like this happens, it is put into perspective… I think there are more important things from our perspective than sport and business. In fact, controversially, maybe I do think it was the right decision. [postpone] and not celebrate what was happening so quickly.”

Shalom noted that efforts are being made to take care of the fighters on the card. As for the fighters aligned with his company, like Shields and Savannah, Shalom said they would all get some sort of advance to make up for the fact that they missed a payday.

“But the fighters, yes, they hurt the most,” Shalom said. “What I would say is that we are dealing with female fighters now who are earning seven-figure prize money, which is remarkable in itself and they are highly paid athletes in themselves… we will support our female fighters, don’t get me wrong. We are giving advances, making sure that nobody is left without anything. What I would say is that fortunately for the fighters on this card, they fight regularly and are paid well.

“All tickets will be transferred to October 15. There will be no changes with that. We are working now with hotel partners and travel partners to see what can be done to subsidize any hotel and travel that happens that week because it was tough and I’m sure there are a lot of people who lost a lot of money. What I can say is that we’re working with insurance, we’re looking at it now, but it’s one of those rare moments that doesn’t happen very often, but it’s one that really puts everything into perspective. We almost have to deal with [it].”

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