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Tuesday, December 06, 2005
HBO has been extremely vulnerable to competition for quite a while. Unfortunately, Showtime hasn't completely taken advantage of the situation. It's as though the elephant has been shot, but the hunter refuses to move in or doesn't have the resources necessary to procure the carcass. -- Greg Smith
Yes, Showtime has far fewer resources than HBO . But they also use them far more wisely than HBO. Look at the early schedule for 2006.
Showtime opens its 2006 season on January 7 with WBA, WBC, and IBF welterweight champ Zab Judah vs. Carlos Baldomir and, in what should be a far more interesting fight, WBA and WBC cruiserweight champ Jean Marc Mormeck vs. IBF cruiserweight champ O’Neil Bell.
HBO? Why, another pay$per$view on January 21 with two rematches of one-sided fights: Erik Morales vs. Manny Pacquiao and Martin Castillo vs. Alexander Munoz. The following week HBO has another fight which was not exactly the result of fans camping out in front of their Sixth Avenue offices: Arturo Gatti vs. Thomas Damgaard. And, of course, they will likely have the replay of Morales-Pacquiao.
January: Advantage Showtime.
Showtime opens the next month on February 4 with Jose Luis Castillo vs. Diego Corrales III. Nuff said.
On February 25, HBO pay$per$view has Fernando Vargas vs. Shane Mosley. The year for this fight is 2006, not 2000 or 2001, so this will be seen more as a battle of two guys whose best days are in the past.
February: Advantage Showtime.
And Showtime opens March with Joe Calzaghe vs. Jeff Lacy, another title unification fight of two undefeated champion, on March 4.
HBO's schedule is not officially out yet for March, but it will be hard for them to have a fight that matches this one in terms of both importance and skill. So we might have Showtime beating out HBO in providing quality telecasts for the entire first quarter of 2006.
Plus, "The L Word" returns on January 8, so Showtime earns a big Yee Haw!