Eddie Hearn has spent his life around elite-level boxers.
The Matchroom Sports chairman helped Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez become the first Mexican undisputed champion and made Anthony Joshua one of the sport’s biggest stars.
During his childhood, he mingled with ring legends under the guidance of his father, Barry Hearn, who he shadowed for years before replacing him in 2021.
“My dad was a promoter when I was eight, nine years of age. I grew up with Naseem Hamed and Chris Eubank and Frank Bruno,” Eddie told Virgin Radio.
“I love the sport, and I love the challenge. If I could have done anything, I would have liked to have played sports, but I was never good enough, and this is kind of like the next best thing working in sports.
“Business is sport, for me. It’s competition. And I love what I do.”
The 44-year-old brought influencer boxing to the mainstream when he promoted KSI vs Logan Paul in November 2019 and four years later the sport is overrun with celebrities,
Hearn recently insisted that traditional boxing should distance itself from influencer boxing after OnlyFans star Daniella Hemsley flashed her breasts following her first win in the square circle.
However, he won’t rule out promoting more celebrity fights as tech billionaires Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk gear up to settle their beef the old-fashioned way.
“It’s the one thing that when everybody has an argument, they say, ‘All right, well, I’ll fight you’,” Hearn said.
“And now you’ve got two of the biggest, well, wealthiest individuals on the planet. Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg, talking about a boxing match or an MMA fight.”
“People always ask me, is that good or bad for boxing? And I say, ‘If I’m promoting it, it’s outstanding. If not, it’s a load of rubbish,’ and I will continue on that path!”
“I’m a big Roy Keane fan. I like when you watch Soccer Sunday and you see him arguing with someone,” he added.
“You look at certain people and you think ‘He could definitely have a go.’
“It’s like Graeme Souness. You look at him, and like, the nose is a little bit like that… and you think, ‘He can definitely have a go.’”
For now, Hearn is fully focused on promoting real fighters as Joshua prepares to take on Robert Helenius at the O2 Arena in London on Saturday night.
AJ was supposed to box Dillian Whyte this weekend but ‘The Body Snatcher’ failed a drug test and their eagerly anticipated rematch was cancelled.
“You’ve got to find another opponent,” Hearn concluded.
“You get 30 people phoning you up, ‘We’ll take the fight, but, by the way, we want 10 mill, thank you very much,’ And you have to get to the bottom of it quickly. You have to think on your feet.”
“AJ wouldn’t, but other fighters might go down to Pizza Hut or have a couple of pints and say ‘I’m not fighting now, this is ridiculous’.
“So, it’s just about managing the situation. He’s a great pro.”