HBO will give boxing fans a rare look inside the training camps of two champion boxers when it debuts a four-part reality series leading up to the May 5 Oscar De La Hoya-Floyd Mayweather pay-per-view fight.
With the opening bell sounding April 15, HBO will air three 30-minute episodes of De La Hoya/Mayweather 24/7 on consecutive Sundays at 10:30 p.m. after signature series The Sopranos and Entourage, HBO Sports president Ross Greenburg said.
The series finale will air May 3, two days before the PPV event, which HBO will distribute to operators and satellite providers at a suggested retail price of $54.95.
The series would take an unprecedented look at each fighter’s training camp weeks prior to their big junior-middleweight-championship match, Greenburg said, noting that HBO would have total editorial control over the series, although each fighter’s camp will have some say regarding how much boxing strategy is revealed on the show.
“We’re going to get into the human-interest stories that swirl around these fighters,” he added. “Our approach will be to produce a totally unique viewing experience as these two world-class athletes prepare for a defining moment in their respective careers.”
While the network aired a similar sports-related reality show with Hard Knocks -- which took cameras into the preseason training camps of the National Football League’s Baltimore Ravens and Dallas Cowboys in 2001 and 2002, respectively -- Greenburg said De La Hoya/Mayweather 24/7 will follow both fighters as they prepare for what could end up the most lucrative fight in non-heavyweight-boxing history.
De La Hoya, arguably the most popular fighter in the sport today, is defending his title against the undefeated Mayweather, whom many boxing experts consider the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world.