The May 7 fight between Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Dmitry Bivol is a departure for streaming service DAZN in a couple of ways. For one thing, it will mark DAZN’s first-ever individual pay-per-view event; they had previously operated under a model of a subscription fee but then free events, and had even launched marketing campaigns criticizing pay-per-view, but circumstances changed with their deal with Alvarez and with the pandemic. The other way this fight will be particularly different from past DAZN offerings is in how it will feature an alternate feed, called ringside by Barstool Sports personalities Dave Portnoy and Dan Katz. Portnoy announced that Thursday:
1 month from today Barstool Sports will be in Vegas for Canelo De Mayo weekend calling the entire Canelo card ring side. The RNR broadcast team meets the best boxer in the world. Click to buy the @DAZNBoxing @barstoolsports collab. https://t.co/3sUF6811Ad pic.twitter.com/fKJeiYV7Sq
— Dave Portnoy (@stoolpresidente) April 7, 2022
This isn’t the first Barstool-DAZN collaboration. They’ve done some programming projects together, including sending Barstool figures to hang out with both Ryan Garcia and Emmanuel Tagoe ahead of their April 9 DAZN fight:
But it’s interesting to see DAZN leaning into alternate broadcasts (a growing trend recently), and to see them partnering with an outside organization like Barstool for one. This probably makes some sense for both sides, though. For DAZN, the hope is that a decent chunk of Barstool’s audience might join the people already buying this pay-per-view (although, there also will be some people who might have bought it, but now won’t support it thanks to a Barstool deal). For Barstool, this helps them get into combat sports a little more; they have their ongoing Rough N’ Rowdy promotion (which Portnoy and Katz have often called), but it’s notable to see them now doing some broadcasts around big traditional fights as well. We’ll see how the partnership works out.