The industry of professional boxing in Quebec could collect a stinging defeat in front of the public health in the next few days. The organization departmental plans to ban professional combat sports until a vaccine or a treatment against the COVID-19.
It is the ministry of Health and social Services who has informed the lawyer of the promoter and boss of Eye of the Tiger Management (EOTM), Camille Estephan, of this possibility on Monday night.
“We never expected ever to such a response on their part, said Estephan at the Journal de Montréal. The problem is that we don’t know why they go in that direction. We had no explanations.
“No one has ever been invited to sit with the authorities of the public health to explain the plan that we wanted to put in place for the presentation of our galas. “
Estephan has been working for over two months on a plan to meet the requirements of the public health. For five days all stakeholders in the gala of boxing would be confined to the inside of a hotel until the end of the event.
They would suffer a total of three tests while those fights would be presented in closed session. A strategy identical to that used by the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and promoter Top Rank for the past two months in the States of Florida and Nevada.
With the tests, the authorities have found positive cases in the fighters or their entourage before the fighting. However, none of them has contracted the COVID-19 to the interior of the octagon or the ring.
The public health control
The spokesperson of public health declined our request for an interview. Rather, they have responded to our questions by email.
“There is no question the vaccine or not. The public Health and the experts assess that the risk of spread is greater in the case of fighting of any kind.
“They don’t recommend back to the moment. Given that the virus spreads by droplets, and in enclosed areas, the boxing bouts increase the risk of spread, taking into account that they are held inside.
“The sweat, blood and saliva are very present during a match, and even exceed 2 meters when the punches are being thrown between opponents.”
On the side of the Régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux (RACJ), which oversees the professional combat sports in Quebec, you throw the ball in the court of public health.
The president of France Lessard never gives interviews to the media on the various folders in which it is responsible. Is it that Ms. Lessard has made the necessary representations to revive professional boxing in Quebec ?
“Ms. Lessard works in the best interest of all licensees, without exception, responded the spokesman of the RACJ, Joyce Tremblay. Neither the Governed nor the president will not have decision-making authority in the records of déconfinement. The management belongs to the public health.”
Even the sound of a bell that side of the department of public Safety.
Letter to Guilbeault
Estephan has no intention of giving up in this folder. It would be wrong to know.
Tuesday, through his lawyer Anthony Rudman, he sent a letter to the minister of public Safety, Geneviève Guilbeault, to intervene with the Dr. Horacio Arruda.
The letter, which The Newspaper has obtained a copy, said that such a decision by the national director of public health would be ” irreversible and catastrophic for the industry of professional boxing in Quebec.”
Since the beginning of his efforts, Estephan has sent all the necessary documents to the government authorities concerned. He was a good player in the interviews he has given. However, all that he has harvested, they are additional delays and responses that lack transparency.
Since Monday evening, speakers from the world of boxing have a sword of Damocles hanging over their head. If public health decides to go forward, it could put an industry, which spreads the reputation of the Quebec city around the world, in danger.