Sky Sports Boxing has been the premier broadcaster of the sport in the United Kingdom for around 30 years now, featuring some of the biggest matchups ever (and Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Logan Paul).
It has moved swiftly to ensure continued coverage of the sport after its dance partner for around a decade – Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Boxing – signed a five-year global pact with streaming platform DAZN, which will now include the UK.
Now Britain’s premier sports broadcaster will go in a different direction after swiftly inking four-year deals with Bob Arum and Top Rank and the relatively young UK outfit Boxxer. The deals will ensure they have UK shows at times which work for domestic viewers, as well as elite action from the United States.
From Lennox Lewis Lewis vs Evander Holyfield to Ricky Hatton vs Floyd Mayweather Jr to Carl Froch vs George Groves to Joshua vs Andy Ruiz Jr, the network has made itself THE go-to destination for fight fans wanting to see their idols in action.
Sky Sports also screened the controversial rematch between YouTubers KSI and Logan Paul in late 2019.
The network has iconic production values and commentary. The pairing of Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory forming a much-loved pairing which elevated so many fights to epic levels.
As well as showing regular bills as part of its normal subscription package, Sky Sports Boxing also shows some bigger-profile fights on pay-per-view with an extra cost via its Sky Sports Box Office platform.
The next massive event on Sky Sports Box Office was set to be the Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua world heavyweight title unification match. The pair have signed a two-fight deal with their first meeting planned for August 14. Those plans were ruined though when Deontay Wilder won an arbitration ruling forcing Fury to fight him instead for a third time.
The consolation prize for Sky viewers is a mixed one – it includes the great Floyd Mayweather Jr, but in an exhibition match with a YouTuber in Logan Paul.
The network has taken a lot of heat for the decision to pick up that ‘fight’ and put it on pay-per-view (£16.95). Particularly when the decision came at the same time it passed on Scot Josh Taylor’s famous unification win over Jose Ramirez at 140lbs.
Sky Sports Box Office
Sky Sports Box Office is the platform used by the network to show its major pay-per-view fights.
Pricing can vary, with the 2019 rematch between Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz for the IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight titles in a Saudi Arabia netting a domestic-record 1.6million buys at a cost of £24.95 per buy.
The most recent Sky Sports Box Office pay-per-view was Dillian Whyte’s rematch win over Alexander Povetkin. That bout in Gibraltar in March 2021 retailed for £19.95.
Sky Sports Box Office how to watch and FAQs
- Sky Sports Box Office events can be purchased by anybody over 18 in the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
- The platform is of course available via conventional set-top boxes which come with regular Sky Sports subscriptions.
- Sky Sports Box Office can also be purchased and viewed online via live stream or the Sky Sports Box Office app. This is assuming you set up a Sky Sports Box Office account have have a broadband connection.
- There are a range of viewing options for subscribers. You can watch the fights via PC, Mac, Now TV Box, Now TV Smart Stick, iPhone, iPad, Android phone and tablet.
- Payments are accepted via Mastercard and Visa and you will pay for the events in pounds sterling only.
Sky Sports Boxing schedule
That new deal with Top Rank means Sky Sports Boxing immediately has an exciting schedule of bouts coming up. They include modern-day greats Vasiliy Lomachenko and Japanese sensation Naoya Inoue. The schedule for Boxxer shows will be announced in August.
A little further ahead and Joshua is set to defend his heavyweight titles against Oleksandr Usyk in the final fight of his current Sky contract. After that we expect a huge bidding war for his services, with at least one Fury fight likely to be part of his next deal:
Upcoming confirmed fights on Sky Sports are as follows:
Saturday June 12, 2021: Lewis Ritson vs Jeremias Ponce (Newcastle, England)
Saturday June 12, 2021: Shakur Stevenson vs Jeremiah Nakathila (Las Vegas, Nevada)
Saturday June 19, 2021: Naoya Inoue vs Michael Dasmarinas (Las Vegas, Nevada)
Saturday June 26, 2021: Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Masoyoshi Nakatani (Las Vegas, Nevada)
Saturday September 25, 2021: Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk (London, England – pay-per-view on Sky Sports Box Office)
Sky Sports Boxing fighters
The end of the Hearn/Matchroom association and the new deals with Top Rank and Boxxer means a new crop of star fighters hitting the screens of Sky viewers.
Importantly, the jewel in Sky Sports Boxing’s crown for the past few years, reigning IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (23-1), is not part of the new Matchroom/DAZN pact in the UK. That means for now he will continue to fight on Sky – though his current contract has only one fight remaining.
Joshua has been a mainstay on the network in recent years. His bouts have produced unforgettable broadcasts, including vs Wladimir Klitschko in 2017 and vs Ruiz Jr in 2019.
AJ will now be joined by Top Rank superstars including welterweight king Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford and the aforementioned Stevenson, Lomachenko and Inoue.
Arum’s stacked stable also boasts promising young heavyweights Efe Ajagba and Jared ‘Big Baby’ Anderson and you can expect to see them on Sky at some stage in the future.
it’s important to note that the Sky/Top Rank deal does not include Tyson Fury, although ‘The Gypsy King’ is co-promoted by Top Rank. Fury’s fights in the UK have aired on BT Sport Box Office recently, and the Deontay Wilder trilogy on July 24 is likely to be no different.
Will Fury vs Joshua be on Sky Sports?
A few short weeks ago this wasn’t even a question, it was a given. Now though the landscape is very very different.
The planned August 14 meeting between the two British world heavyweight champions in Saudi Arabia was set to be the last fight on Joshua’s current Sky deal. But the collapse of that plan, and Joshua’s subsequent move to fight Usyk, changes everything.
AJ, still promoted by Hearn and Matchroom, will now be a broadcast free agent after the Usyk fight and is likely to spark one of the biggest bidding wars in British boxing history.
DAZN have confirmed they will be major players in the hunt for Joshua’s signature and in theory BT Sport could also enter the fray – signing AJ would mean they’d have both fighters locked up for this massive potential fight.
Whatever happens, the action outside the ring is likely to be as exciting as that inside the ropes. Get your popcorn ready…