Sugar Ray Leonard, Mike Tyson, Ali, Oscar de la Hoya, and the latest, Floyd Mayweather, are all among the greatest boxers ever to set foot in the ring. They have something else in common, though – at one point of their career, they resided in the city that has become the boxing capital in the world. Las Vegas has always been bathing in the light of the current most popular boxing figure, and it will continue to do so, turning Sin City into the capital of big combat sports. But what makes Vegas unique in its relationship with boxing? What is the reason why it is the boxing capital of the world?
Gambling and sports – a good match
Las Vegas has been, for a long time, the gambling capital of the United States, and it will most likely continue to be in the coming years. Gambling alone was never enough to bring the masses to the city, especially after the first online casinos were launched in the mid-1990s. Since then, online casinos have become convenient destinations covering all the players’ gambling needs. The Euro Palace, for example, has all the games you might find at a Vegas casino, and then some. Aside from being easy to reach, the Euro Palace is always open, never crowded, and always fair. Besides, you don’t have to travel to it – the Euro Palace comes to you over the internet. Not to mention the fact that you’ll always find something to read at Euro Palace casino blog – and not just about its games.
Gambling alone is not enough to attract millions of tourists to the Sin City. In time, it has built a complete range of services around its gambling businesses – today it’s not gambling, but the nightlife, the shows, the restaurants, and – yes – the sporting events attracting people to Vegas.
Boxing – from sport to entertainment
Boxing was the first sport to be televised – the first sporting event ever transmitted over the air was Willie Pep defending his title against Chalky Wright in 1944. In time, boxing became less of a sport, and more a form of entertainment, in the TV channels’ effort to give viewers what they wanted. So much so, that when the NBC pulled the plug on its Friday night boxing programming, Jack Dempsey told the press that he was glad the show has been gone. “Now we should see the return of something like normal in boxing,” he said. Boxing needed a fresh start – and Nevada seemed to be the best choice at the time.
Boxing found its new home in Vegas in 1960, inside the massive – and brand new – Las Vegas Convention Center.
The rest, as they say, is history. Slowly, with more casinos trying to attract more patrons, started organizing fights themselves – and the public was game.