Star takes a ‘dive’ 12 seconds into boxing fight, earns $1.3m

Baseball icon Jose Canseco made over $AUD1.3 million fighting a 22-year-old employee of American sports media empire Barstool Sports for just a few seconds on Saturday (AEDT) — and it did not go over well with the company.

The 56-year-old disgraced former MLB star was accused of taking a “dive” when he crumbled to the canvas just 12 seconds into the headline match for the media company’s $20 pay-per-view amateur boxing event, “Rough ‘N Rowdy”.

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The fight immediately ended when the 193cm, 122kg Canseco fell to the floor and held his right shoulder after taking a couple of punches from Barstool’s Will Cotter, a former high school football player who stands at the same height as Canseco and weighs 102kg.

Afterwards, Canseco claimed he tore his shoulder months earlier.

“Jose 100 per cent took a dive,” Barstool Sports founder and president Dave Portnoy tweeted. “We paid half up front and he got double if he won. We thought that would ensure he’d fight. We were wrong.”

Portnoy said in a tweet on Saturday that Canseco was guaranteed $65,000, as well as a revenue share if Barstool broke its record for pay-per-view purchases. The company “shattered” the record, according to Portnoy.

“Get ready to puke,” Portnoy tweeted. “Jose made over 1 million dollars (US) for 5 seconds last night.”

Jose Canseco vs Billy Football Full Fight pic.twitter.com/a0oSYloi3B

The Barstool Sportsbook, which is owned by gambling operator Penn National Gaming, said it voided all bets on Canseco, while those who bet on Cotter were awarded.

An admitted steroids user who outed several baseball stars including New York Yankees icon Alex Rodriguez, Canseco earned more than $58 million playing baseball, but filed for bankruptcy in 2012 and has struggled financially since.

These days Canseco floods the internet with alien conspiracy theories and picks fights with Rodriguez, whom he has baselessly accused of cheating on fiancee Jennifer Lopez with Canseco’s ex-wife, Jessica.

Rodriguez hosts a business podcast with Barstool Sports, and when he declined Canseco’s invitation to meet in the boxing ring, the media company stepped in.

The fight was billed by Barstool as a way to “settle the score” between the two former baseball sluggers.

“I’m fighting tonight for everyone who’s tired of Barstool Sports being on the internet,” Canseco tweeted before the fight.

This story first appeared on the New York Post and was reproduced with permission

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