NBC Sports Group announced today the addition of Laila Ali, B.J. Flores, Kenny Rice and Chris Mannix to its Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) coverage on NBC and NBCSN.
Three-time super middleweight champion Ali and former two-time U.S. amateur heavyweight champion Flores will serve as corner analysts for PBC on NBC telecasts. Mannix and Rice will report ringside, and Rice will conduct interviews. Rice will also serve as the blow-by-blow announcer on select NBCSN shows.
The debut of PBC on NBC live in primetime on Saturday, March 7 at 8:30 p.m. ET on NBC features a pair of blockbuster bouts — Keith Thurman vs. Robert Guerrero, and Adrien Broner vs. John Molina Jr. — from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Blow-by-blow announcer Marv Albert and analyst “Sugar” Ray Leonard call the action. Al Michaels will host.
“We are excited to add punching power to our PBC on NBC team,” said Sam Flood, Executive Producer, NBC Sports and NBCSN. “With Laila’s and B.J.’s experience in the ring, and the boxing commentary Kenny and Chris have done on NBCSN, we will have every corner covered.”
LAILA ALI – CORNER ANALYST: The daughter of boxing legend Muhammad Ali, Laila Ali was an undefeated four-time world champion in her eight-year professional boxing career, winning 24 bouts, 21 by knockout. Ali has held various broadcasting, acting and reality television roles. At the 2012 London Olympics, she served as an analyst on NBC’s coverage of the first-ever women’s Olympic boxing competition. She has also appeared on NBC’s The Biggest Loser and E! Network’s Fashion Police, competed and twice won Food Network’s Chopped Champions, and advanced to the final round as a competitor on Dancing with the Stars. She currently hosts FYI Network’s Late Nite Chef Fight food truck cook-off show, serves as a regular contributor on CBS Sports Network’s all-female sports program We Need To Talk, and hosts All In With Laila Ali airing in weekend syndication on CBS.
B.J. FLORES – CORNER ANALYST: Flores served as an analyst for NBC Sports Group’s Fight Night boxing series from 2012-14, while continuing to pursue a professional boxing title in the ring. He has been ranked among the top 15 cruiserweight in the world since July 2007. Previously, Flores was an analyst on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights. After posting a 112-10 amateur record, he fought his first two professional bouts on NBC broadcasts in May 2003. Flores was the 2001 and 2002 U.S. men’s national champion, and was the only American to win gold in the Four Nations Championship in 2002. He has a career record of 31 wins (20 knockouts), and 1 loss, and is a five-time North American champion.
KENNY RICE – REPORTER, INTERVIEWER, BLOW-BY-BLOW ANNOUNCER: Rice will serve as a ringside reporter and interviewer for PBC on NBC. Rice, who has served as NBC’s Olympic boxing reporter, called NBC Sports Group’s Fight Night boxing series. In addition, Rice has contributed to NBC Sports Group’s thoroughbred racing coverage since 1999, including the Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup Classic. Rice will also handle blow-by-blow on select PBC shows on NBCSN.
CHRIS MANNIX – REPORTER: Mannix joined NBC Sports Group in 2012, and hosts The Chris Mannix Show on NBC Sports Radio. Mannix worked with Flores and Rice on NBC Sports Group’s Fight Night boxing series as a ringside reporter, and is Sports Illustrated’s senior boxing writer.
NBC and NBCSN will present 20 live PBC on NBC boxing events in 2015. Within the 20 live shows, NBC Sports Group will present more than 50 hours of PBC coverage, including NBCSN pre- and post-fight programming for NBC telecasts. The Premier Boxing Champions series is created for television by Haymon Boxing. The PBC on NBC will feature many of today’s brightest stars, in their most compelling matches.
All PBC on NBC shows will be streamed live on NBC Sports Live Extra via “TV Everywhere,” giving consumers additional value for their subscription service, and making high quality content available to MVPD customers both in and out of the home and on multiple platforms. NBC Sports Live Extra is available for desktops at NBCSports.com/liveextra. The NBC Sports Live Extra app is available at the App Store for iPad and iPod touch, on select devices within Google Play, and on windows phones and tablets.