Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Boxing Podcast with VP of Communications at Haymon Sports and the PBC - Tim Smith

My guest on this podcast is Tim Smith, VP of Communications at Haymon Sports and Premier Boxing Champions (PBC).  Tim was a long-time boxing writer, having covered the sport at the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Cincinnati Enquirer, the New York Times and the New York Daily News before taking his position at the PBC.  We spoke about Tim's years as a boxing writer, the PBC's pursuit of a TV deal on free TV, the PBC's potential teaming up with Dana White and Zuffa Boxing, Top Rank's deal on ESPN, the World Boxing Super Series and Floyd Mayweather potentially fighting in the UFC.  Great discussion - enjoy!

Check out what's going on at the PBC at the following link:  http://www.premierboxingchampions.com/

For more Boxing Esq. podcasts, you can find them on Soundcloud at the below embed or subscribe on either iTunes or Stitcher.  If you enjoy the podcasts, please leave a comment or rating, that would be greatly appreciated.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Square Ring Survives Motion to Dismiss in Breach of Contract Suit vs. Eduard Troyanovsky

Interesting issues in a breach of contract case filed by Square Ring, Inc., Roy Jones, Jr.'s promotional entity, against former IBF Junior Welterweight Champion Eduard Troyanovsky in U.S. Federal Court, Northern District of Florida.

The complaint itself is pretty straight forward (see Complaint below).  It alleges, in essence, that Troyanovsky signed a promotional agreement with Square Ring and Salita Promotions, Dmitiry Salita's promotional entity, as co-promoters.  Salita was subsequently bought out by Vlad Hrunov.  Square Ring and Hrunov co-promoted Troyanovsky's bouts until such time as Troyanovsky started participating in bouts promoted by another entity (unnamed in the complaint but initially - Aleksey Stashkov's World Boxing).

In response, Troyanovsky's counsel filed a motion to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim and lack of personal jurisdiction, quash service, and, alternatively, to disqualify counsel (Square Ring CEO John Wirt).  Plaintiff then filed a motion in opposition (see MTD and Opp briefs below). 

There are some interesting issues regarding forum selection clauses, prior material breach and minimum contacts in the briefs.   But what really caught my eye was an issue Troyanovsky's counsel raised for the first time in a Joint Statement of the parties regarding the need for an evidentiary hearing to decide the validity of the forum selection clause (see Joint Statement below).  Counsel raised the argument that Florida's long arm statute regarding personal jurisdiction did not apply because the promotional contract constituted a labor or employment contract - both of which were excluded under the statute.  A finding by the Court that promotional contracts are labor or employment contracts would be interesting precedent.

Judge Rodgers, however, rejected Troyanovsky's argument.  After initially rejecting the argument because it was not raised in the Motion to Dismiss brief and was therefore waived, the Court further stated that even "[i]n the absence of waiver, the Court would find that the Agreement is not a contract '[f]or labor or employment' under Fla. Stat. § 685.101." 

Because the terms "labor" and "employment" were not defined in the statute, the Court looked to how the terms were defined by the common law and the dictionary.  The Court found "Laborer" was defined in Webster's as "a person who does unskilled physical work for wages."  The Court further found that under the common law, "an 'employee' is a person who performs services under the substantial control or direction of an employer."

The Court held that the promotional agreement at issue was "for the promotion of Troyanovsky's skills as a world-class professional boxer, not unskilled work."  The Court further found that Square Ring did not exert sufficient control over Troyanovsky such that he was an employee.  Thus, the promotional agreement was not a contract for labor or employment that would exempt it from the effect of the forum selection clause. 

Ultimately, the Court denied the motion to dismiss, quash service and disqualify counsel, finding for Square Ring on all counts (see the Court's Order below). 

See Complaint below:

See MTD below:

See Opp to MTD below:

See Joint Statement below:

See Order below:

Friday, February 16, 2018

Official Boxing Esq. World Boxing Ratings - February 2018

Presenting the February 2018 Boxing Esq. World Boxing Ratings.

MovementsHeavys – Kownacki moved up from 15 to 12 with win over KO win over Iago Kiladze.

Cruisers – Briedis moved up from 4 to 3 off strong performance vs. Usyk.  Dorticos moved up from 6 to 5 off of strong performance against Gassiev.  Glowacki moved down from 3 to 6 after poor performance vs. Serhiy Radchenko.

Welters – Peterson moved down from 9 to 10 after beating from Spence.  Mimoune moved from 16 at Welter to 12 at Jr. Welter.  Robinson moves up to 25.

Jr. Welters – Mimoune in at 12.  Saucedo from 25 to out.

Lights – Fortuna moves up from 9 to 8 off of strong showing vs. Easter.

Jr. Feathers – Emanuel Navarette up to 25.  Albert Pagara out.

Bantams – Ryo Akaho out due to retirement.  Suriyan Kaikanha in at 23.

Flys – Fuentes moved down from 10 to 13 after KO1 loss to Higa.

Jr. Flys – Moises Calleros moved from 23 at Jr. Fly to 13 at Straw due to pending title shot at 105.  Alexis Diaz in at 25.

Straws – Calleros in at 13.  Jerry Tomogdan moved from 22 to out after getting stopped in 5 by Pedro Taduran.  Taduran in at 23.  Xolisa Magusha moved from 25 to out.

Light Heavys, Super Middles, Middles, Jr. Middles, Jr. Lights, Feathers and Super Flys - NO CHANGES.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Boxing Podcast with former HBO Boxing Marketing Exec - Evan Rutkowski

My guest on this podcast is Evan Rutkowski, former manager of marketing strategy at HBO.  Evan is also the author of a great new podcast titled The Fistianados Podcast, where he gives his take on what television network executives are looking at when they survey the current fight scene.  We spoke in depth about Top Rank's deal on ESPN as well as the PBC's situation and why no network has picked up the WBSS.  It was a fun discussion - enjoy!

To check out Evan's podcast on the Leave It In The Ring Network at the following link - https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/leave-it-in-the-ring-radio/id316004573?mt=2

Enjoy this podcast and for more Boxing Esq. podcasts, you can find them on Soundcloud at the below embed or subscribe on either iTunes or Stitcher.

Boxing Esq. Podcast #64 - Matt Christie

This week's guest is one of my favorite boxing writers, Mr. Matt Christie. Matt was until recently the editor of the longest-running bo...