By BOB LEWIS
On Aug. 23, the Showtime Cable Network will introduce Broken Arrow’s award-winning Rose District to millions of viewers across the country.
Taking center stage that evening will be a unique outdoor boxing event dubbed “Rumble in the Rose” taking place in the intersection of Main and Commercial streets It is expected to attract upwards of 1,500 live spectators along with Showtime’s national audience.
Headlining the main event will be unbeaten Oklahoma heavyweight Trey Lippe Morrison, who now stands at 16-0. His opponent is yet to be announced.
For Morrison, who has won all 16 of his bouts via knockout, excellence in the ring is a family tradition. His father, Tommy, is a former world heavyweight champion.
Scheduled to compete in other bouts are super middleweights Vladimir Shishkin and DeAndre Ware and junior welterweights Shohjahon Ergashev and Abdiel Ramirez.
This event is the outgrowth of a friendship between Brent Brassfield, Broken Arrow’s Business Retention and Development Coordinator, and Tulsa-based boxing promoter Tony Holden coupled with the willingness of the B.A. City Council to think outside the box when it comes to promoting the community’s ultra-successful downtown redevelopment project.
In an earlier interview, Holden told the Tulsa World, the Rose District, “is beautiful. It’ll look great on TV.”
Holden said boxing is making a comeback after a period where mixed martial arts was more popular among younger spectators. “I think it’s going to continue to grow. What boxing needs is a heavyweight. That’s why there’s a lot of attention on Trey,” he said.
Showtime is an American premium cable and satellite television network that serves as the flagship service of the Showtime Networks subsidiary of CBS Corp. According to the company’s website, services for Showtime and CBS All Access, which carries broadcast network programming and originals, are on track to reach 8 million subscribers in 2019 and 16 million by 2022.
City Manager Michael Spurgeon said the city is investing about $110,000 to stage this event. “We believe that based on ticket sales, promotions and sponsorships, we should be able to recoup about 75 to 80 percent of our investment,” he said.