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Is Holyfield vs. Belfort ‘as low as we are going to go’?

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Vitor Belfort vs. Evander Holyfield Amanda Westcott,/Triller

Nick Catterall and Adam Peet reacted with disgust over the debacle of Vitor Belfort’s win over Evander Holyfield at the weekend.

Speaking on JABS as part of the DAZN Boxing Show, Peet and Catterall both saw the weekend’s spectacle as something of a nadir for fighting.

Catterall said: “I hope this is rock bottom. Hope this is as low as boxing can possibly go. In this bizarre circus boxing era that we're living through right now.

“I can live with YouTube boxers attracting a brand new audience and hand picking opponents. I can kind of [stomach] boxing organisations overlooking it on regulations, because they do it all the time. 

“But what I certainly can't stomach is near 60-year-old former legends being given licences to box, being sold to the public as actual professional boxing, and having wool pulled over our eyes or deceived.

“I've got an absolute load of garbage. That's what I can't live with. It was absolutely disgraceful. This is as low as we are going to go.”

Peet agreed, saying: “A lot of us in this game have got to ... take a little bit of authority on this situation. I'm talking commissions, I'm talking sanctioning bodies, I'm talking promoters, and I'm talking broadcasters. 

“For the last five, six years, we've been lying to fans, we've been selling them a storyteller, we've been telling them that we're giving them the best against the best, we've been telling them that we've been given them number one against number two.

“[Casual fans], they are the most important people in this game. They're thirsty for action. They're thirsty for it. But they've gone elsewhere to go and get that thirst quenched. What's happened is that we've got YouTubers, we've got celebrities, we've got guys from other sports. And we've got retired fighters coming out for one last dance. That's where the attention has gone to the casual fan. 

“When that happens, the vultures start to circulate, they start to go around and think to themselves as a few, quite a few men here, let's get stuck in now there's people within the game of boxing. But what it’s also done is attract people that have no consideration to the world of boxing whatsoever. They're not bothered about the health and safety of any fighter at all. They're just interested in lining their own pockets.”

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