Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Pavlik Fights Tickets are a Tough Sell in Ohio

In a state where the unemployment rate is at exactly 10% - trying to convince people to buy tickets for a boxing match less than a week before Christmas is proving to be a tough sell.

Middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik will defend his titles this Saturday against Miguel Espino at Youngstown State University’s Beeghly Center. Located in downtown Youngstown, the Beeghly Center is home to the school’s basketball and volleyball teams.

The arena seats approximately 6,500 for boxing and tickets for the fight are priced between $50 and $250.

This reporter has confirmed with that as of Tuesday night, seats are still available for all price ranges. In the $250, $150 and $50 ranges, groups of 10 are available if one desires them. Tickets went on sale Nov. 25th.

Whether it’s a question of the time of year, the economy, the short window of time to promote the fight, Pavlik’s lowly-rated opponent or a combination of all of those things is not clear. But there is a noticeable lack of buzz surrounding this card compared to when Youngstown’s favorite son appeared there to a hero’s welcome in February.

A local resident and self-professed Kelly Pavlik supporter e-mailed the following to to me Tuesday morning:

“The last fight with Rubio that was at the Chevy Centre, the cheap seats sold out in about 20 minutes. Right now, if you wanted to, you could get an entire row of seats anywhere you want in the entire arena. I think working people (the ones that still have a job) here in the Mahoning Valley have had a choice to make with this fight. Do they spend their hard-earned money on fight tickets or on their families? Nothing against Kelly Pavlik - AT ALL - but I think that’s the choice that a lot of people had to make.”

Organizers are hoping for a healthy walk-up crowd. Aside from Pavlik, there are numerous fighters on the undercard from Ohio.

Jack Loew put those fights together and he told the Youngtown Vindicator last month that, “They have so many fans, and they’re going to sell a lot of tickets. I think it’s going to be a really good show.”

December 2009

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