Badou Jack Hints At Employing Mayweather Racial Polarization Method

By nature, boxing riches are fueled by polarization.

By nature, boxing riches are fueled by polarization. When an unstoppable force meets an immovable object it is called the irresistible force paradox. And pugilist’s who understand how that can relate to their business usually profit the most.

Enter Badou Jack, Mayweather Promotions fighter and current WBA light heavyweight champion. While on tour in the Middle East, Jack told Sport 360 about his list of potential opponents, and what he said showed that he might take a page out of his boss’ playbook.

“Adonis (Stevenson) obviously,” said Jack. “Maybe someone we don’t like. A racist fighter? A scumbag, Kovalev has made some racist comments, so maybe him.” 

Referring to Kovalev’s penchant to utilize racial stereotypes towards his opponents and those he wants to bait, which he believes is “humor”, Jack is letting off the first shot towards a potential face-off. Kovalev notoriously labeled WBC champion Adonis Stevenson a gorilla and more recently, tweeted videos that used racial epithets towards Andre Ward. 

Kovalev, sans a title currently since Ward demolished him and retained his belts before retiring, is definitely a bigger name than Badou Jack and the matchup is intriguing. 

However, like Floyd Mayweather who capitalized on the racially polarizing fight with Conor McGregor to make another couple hundred million, Jack is realizing that he has to jump into the mix and force the fans to choose a side.

Badou Jack – Highlights / Knockouts

Highlights of the current WBC Super-Middleweight champion. Badou Jack – Is a Swedish Professional boxer. Born to a Gambian father and a Swedish mother, he has represented both nations in the Olympics. He currently holds the WBC Super Middleweight world title.

One can look as far back as Jack Johnson vs. Jim Jeffries all the way up to Larry Holmes vs. Gerry Cooney to understand how racial politics contributed to box office bonanzas. Mayweather was the first fighter-promoter to bill himself proudly as the cocky black guy that would take on any comers of other races, specifically to bait the racial animus of the general population. 

Before Mayweather fought Andre Berto to an unceremonious win, he hadn’t fought an African-American fighter since “Sugar” Shane Mosely in 2010. Before that, Zab Judah in 2006. The fight that launched the “Money” Mayweather brand was against Oscar de la Hoya, where he went on full display baiting Mexican fans to net him his biggest PPV showing at the time, 2.7 million viewers. 

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That sounds infinitesimal now since Mayweather perfected the art of racial polarization, making Mayweather Promotions arguably the best promotion company in history if pay-per-view settles the score. 

However, with Gervonta Davis having lost his belt due to not making weight and the remaining members of the stable beneath the radar, Badou Jack is making a brilliant move by advancing on Kovalev.

Kovalev is currently slated to fight Ukranian fighter Vyacheslav Shabranskyy on November 25th to begin his trek back to title contention. With Jack making it easy for him to jump back in the title mix if Kovalev does what he knows best, be a racially insensitive emotional opponent, then boxing’s coffers will be full again. But now instead of Mayweather headlining, it will be his protege extending the marketing strategy legacy.            

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. Having been involved with combat sports since 2005, Rhett began in the Fighter Relations Department of the UFC and World Extreme Cagefighting. Eventually, he became the Site Coordinator for the now-defunct Strikeforce organization. He then founded Fight Services and handled the event and talent logistics for MMA World Series of Fighting, Titan FC, as well as boxing promoter K2 Promotions. Rhett was also a Stage Manager for Showtime Championship Boxing. Currently, Rhett is the lead combat sports and bodybuilding writer, producer, podcaster, and host for The Shadow League. He has also been published in Money Magazine, reported for TIME Magazine and been a freelance writer for UFC.com, MaximumFighting.com, UFC 360 Magazine, Fight Magazine, MMAPayout.com, and Heavy.com. Rhett has hosted lifestyle TV programming in the Washington, D.C. market on the District of Columbia Network (DCN) and the District Knowledge Network (DKN) and has been a Play-By-Play Announcer for Monumental Sports Network’s PPV streaming service.