Larry Merchant claims Affliction paid Oscar De La Hoya $5 million ...

... to attend and help promote "Day of Reckoning" -- a venture that his Golden Boy Promotions backed -- rather than sit ringside at a big boxing match that aired on HBO that same night.

Here's the Merchant rant via MMA Insider Blog:

"A celebrity who is here in bronze only [referring to a bronze statue of Oscar De La Hoya that stands outside the Staples Center]. Oscar De La Hoya, the live version, is in nearby Anaheim, where his company got a $5 million fee from a t-shirt maker so that he would be personally involved the promotion of a mixed martial arts show.It would take that much, Jim, to get me to go to one of those things."

Golden Boy Promotions helped promote a welterweight superfight between four-time world champion "Sugar" Shane Mosley and Mexican sensation Antonio Margarito last night (Jan. 24), as well as the Affliction "Day of Reckoning" pay-per-view (PPV) card. One was held at the Staples Center and the other at the nearby Honda Center. It appears that someone may be jealous, drunk (again) or perhaps senile -- or all of the above -- because promoting titan Oscar De La Hoya was visibly absent. At the very least the tandem of Merchant and Jim Lampley felt the need to provide a reason the Golden Boy chose one event over the other. There's no word from Affliction at this time whether or not the $5 million figure that Merchant suggests is legit or just more unnecessary bluster from the decrepit blowhard.

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