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Evander Holyfield: Boxing Is ‘Coming Back’

David R. Lutman/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Hall of Famer Evander Holyfield believes that boxing is on its way back to the main stage.

Holyfield said Friday that the Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight next weekend, for which he's giving away one lucky seat beside him, is energizing the sport.

"It's coming back," Holyfield told ABC Sports Radio. "Only thing I could do is hope for young guys to start working on the amateur program where we get these guys into boxing at a young age where they can be a little more mature and seasoned."

Holyfield said the rise of the Ultimate Fighting Championship isn't the reason that boxing has taken a backseat. Instead, he thinks putting fights behind expensive cable networks is the reason it's fallen in prominence. 

"Put boxing back on free television where the young kids will be able to say I think I want to do that," he explained. "You want to teach kids at a young age because that's where they learn how to box."

"Instead of just saying I want to hit hard, I want to knock somebody out, they learn how to box," Holyfield continued.  

As for the Mayweather-Pacquaio fight, Holyfield said that things can get interesting.

"These guys are clever good boxers and if it does go the distance, I think it plays to Manny's advantage because he throws a lot of punches," Holyfield said.  "It's almost impossible to throw a lot of punches and not win the fight if both of them get hit and nobody gets knocked out."

For more information on how you can get a seat next to the former heavyweight champion on May 2 in Las Vegas, click here.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Author: Tommy Byrne

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