The Contender

Tuesday 10:00 PM on ESPN Premiered Mar 07, 2005 In Season


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The Contender Fan Reviews (43)

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out of 10
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  • Great show for those who box and love competition.

    The Contender is a great show but i believe it is missing one thing...ME...Next season they should come to Norfolk, VA at the East Coast Boxing gym looking for Andrew Benton to bring ratings through the roof!!!! Most of these boxers on on t.v so they can be famous, while thats not a bad idea they make people who really love the sport look bad. They go in there looking to fight and win the prize, to me the prize is winning the fight. Boxing is a craft, a finess not a hobby. If i were on the show I'd show people what they came to watch, great boxing not a brawl...
  • I think The Contender is the best reality show ever.

    I was very impressed with the 1st 3 seasons, I was never a boxing fan until this show came on, I think it's the best reality show ever and I hope they continue this show. I can't seem to get enough, I watch each episode over and over again until the next show would come on. I really hope this show comes back.I think Sugar Ray Lenard and Sylvester stalone should get back together and continus to work to make the show even better, if that is possible. The stories behind the boxers lives and struggles really get you picking favorates and cheering them on. I am usually on the edge of my seat at fight time, great, exciting show, please keep it going.
  • Amazing!

    I have to say that I have only watched season 1, and then watched the odd episode off season 2.

    In New Zealand, Series 1 and 2 got a good timeslot so I watched those 2 seasons completely. But season 3 didnt, so I never ended up watching it half the time. I guess it didnt get good enough ratings second time round and they dropped it into a later timeslot.

    Season 1 was great, I loved the presence of Sly and of course Sugar Ray on the show, they really know what theyre on about and I just loved them.

    Also each and every fighter made the show more interesting, some more than others, like the "big talkers", but each of them was great.
  • personally coming from a girl who boxed her whole life this was an amazing show that even i learned stuff from when i thought i knew everything.

    The way the fights were the way you matched them it all fell into place perfect. You taught them stuff that they didn't even know and i must say it helped me with my coaching to, it turned out to be very a good show that i had all my friends interested in even people who didn't really know anything about boxing was interested in watching it and we always looked forward to it. i think and a lot more people i know here in Newfoundland Canada thinks you guys should start a whole new season of it. sincerely Kelly Hunt and all her friends in Newfoundland, Canada
  • I watch the Contender Every time its on. Why? Because it something I would love to do, it gives me Inspiration, and makes me feel like that things can be done if you put your mind to the task. If I could I would love to be part of the Contender.

    I dont know if Sugar Ray reads these as he is prob really busy, but I can tell you, he is the Best. Everytime he Talks, he talks with sence, and honesty. He is a Boxer that will take on anyone, and someone I admire very much. I do Have something to say to him and Slyvester... Get your Butts here to NEW ZEALAND!!! lol Cheers
  • Amazing!! Just Amazing!!

    I'm a 40 year old female from Virginia and for the first time in my life, I sat down today with my boyfriend and watched the entire 2nd season of the Contender on ESPN. I LOVE this show. Never in my life have I been interested in boxing. We had so much fun today watching the entire season and then the finale all in one afternoon. I am now hooked on boxing, but what is most important is that I am hooked on the Contender. It is a great show. Keep up the EXCELLENT work and I am looking forward to next season.

    Briget Reynolds, Virginia
  • Suggestions to improve The Contender

    This is the first season that I’ve watched The Contender. I like the idea of a boxing tournament but they do way too much editing of the fights. I often feel like I’m watching MTV boxing because of the camera angle changes that occur every 1.1 seconds. If they want to increase the audience for boxing (and for this show for that matter) maybe they should have a technical analyst who breaks down the film just like Ron (Jaws) Jaworski does for NFL football. I’d love to see a technical analyst break down film of a boxer’s previous fight in which he discusses the boxer’s weaknesses and how the other boxer should capitalize on them. Finally, please, please stop with stupid trinkets from Sugar Ray Leonard. How about using more product placement incentives as prizes for the fighters? Almost all of these fighters seem to be family men trying to support their families. They could use prizes like GE washer and dryers with Tide detergent for a year for winners in the first round, a trip for the family to Disneyworld for second round winners, a Dodge Ram for third round winners and the cash grand prize for the champion. When we see their families, we feel for them and want them to have a better life, regardless of who wins.
  • I am not much of a boxing fan, but this show has made me one.

    First of all, I want to thank ESPN for bringing The Contender back. It\\\'s an amazing reality show that has a faithful following of different fans from different parts of the country. Also, I am happy to note that the younger kids or children of the contenders aren\\\'t not allowed in the ring anymore. It was hard to watch the younger children watching their father in the ring getting beat up, if they were, it was a good move disallowing them to be in the ring. Anyway, to sum it all, this show has been exciting and I am looking forward to seein it again next year.
  • corruption reaches the contender ill will never watch it again. I was a huge fan but no more you guys really spoiled the dream for alot of athletes.I guess its who YOU KNOW and not your performance. Boxing, just isnt the same what a shame!!!!!!!

    Im not one to write anything but im so disgusted with this last bout. ive been watching boxing as a kid having big get togethers to see the greats fight. ive also witnessed the coruption of boxing. i cant believe the contender has followed that route. the scores for bravo/grady were terrible who was scoring the bout i have a blind uncle if you need judges. how do you take that away from bravo he clearly won that bout and your scores 47/47,48/46,49/46 come on i cant believe of all people sugar you would let this happen. im so dissapointed
  • Looking for a Real Reality Show?

    The Contender brings fresh hungry fighters to the general public who by the end of the show are household names. The show does a good job of getting people interested in boxing again. Bringing back the glory days of Sugar, Duran, Hearns and Hagler. You have hungry boxers shooting for 2 things, a shot of having a monster payday and a chance to let the world know who they are. This is a reality show worth watching there are no gimmicks or make believe situations, this is real. It shows you the day-to-day struggles and successes of a boxer. This is there life. After watching one episode of The Contender you will be hooked. It is a quality show beyond a doubt and kudos to ESPN for picking up the 2nd season.
  • The Contender show which aired September 5, 2006 - The fight between K-9 and Walter Wright.

    I just finished watching the fight between Walter Wright and K-9 on tonight's episode of The Contender and I must say that I was quite disappointed in the decision. I hope that many Contender fans write in and express their disgust with tonight's decision to give K-9 that win (it was given to him because he surely did not earn it). I don't think that K-9 deserved that win as he fought EXTREMELY dirty the entire show and gave boxing a bad name for being an honest sport. I WAS a Contender fan up until tonight, but I no longer think that the show is fair; I now was believe that the wins are rigged and if you are not knocked out during the fight, that the winner is pre-selected. I was utterly disgusted with the sportsmanship displayed by K-9 during that match and I'm sure that a lot of other people watching tonight's show would agree. Walter Wright won fair and square and should have been awarded what was rightfully owed to him; his win. I am no longer interested in seeing who wins in the end because I now believe that the win will go to whomever was pre-selected for the win. The contender show has just lost a fan (for what it's worth).
  • This show makes you feel like you're local and know the boxers and their families. You feel like you're there!

    This show makes you feel like you're seeing the matches on a local level. You want the boxers to win on a personal level. Seeing a match live is the best, and this show makes you feel like you're there! My family has been involved in boxing for three generations and we enjoy the sport. I like seeing it becoming more popular again. It's the one night I let my young son stay up late, and we watch it together, some times even my daughter gets into it! When I was a young girl I remember watching boxing with my dad, and now I'm watching it with my kids! Thanks!
  • I am a mom of two boys and I have never cared for boxing, Now I am hooked, I love this show.

    I am a mom of two boys and I have never cared for boxing, Now I am hooked, I love this show. I especially liked the first season when you had a chance to get more connected with the boxers and the competions outside of boxing I am even considering getting tickets for my husband and I to go to the season finale in September for his 50th birthday(What a gift) From Indiana to California(What would I tell my boys when Mom leaves them at home)!!!
  • Overall I think the show is great. I'm a huge sports fan and the contender is great to watch.

    I’m a female that love all sports, but recently I start watching the contender and love it. But I must say that I thought the fight that Walter Wright picked showed me that he was a coward, a man with so much talented, did not prove himself to me. I enjoyed every other fight but that one. Looking forward to the final show hope to see K9 in the final.
  • I LOVE THIS SHOW. I came across this show last season, and I am not a boxing fan at all. Yeah, I know the major players, Ali, Frazer, Forman, Tyson, well that is about it, oh yeah can't forget Sugar Ray.

    But the first season hooked me right in. I couldn't wait for the day the The Contender was on, I would make sure everything was ready, couldn't have any interruptions. Sitting on the couch, I noticed during the matches my feet were constantly moving and I would sit in my seat bouncing back and forth. I LOVE THIS SHOW. The competitiveness is addicting, and getting to see their family life makes them more like real people instead of just guys on a tv show. This season, I didn't realize it was on until tonight but I am already right back into it. 4 Star Show :)
  • The Contender - Boxing great.

    What better network to air such a fabulous show than ESPN. I love every aspect of this season. The set is great. The graphics are great. Sugar Ray is even more handsome than before. I love this show. The contestants this year are just as endearing as last season and it was so cool to see Gomez. Thanks ESPN for remembering the fans of this show.
  • Another Survivor clone featuring Rambo.

    On the good side, it's produced by the guy who created Survivor. It stars Slyvester Stallone and Sugar Ray Leonard. On the bad side, it's a boring show. There's nothing in it exciting enough to watch. Maybe I'm being biased here since I hate boxing to begin with. Boxing only good an tv or movie dramas. On a reality show, it looks gruesome. I just don't like it. Rocky was a very nice movie, I enjoy that since it's drama. It's not working for me with this reality format. It looks dull. Why do they keep making this kind of show. I don't get it.
  • I love the Contender show and was pleasantly surprised to find it on ESPN. I'm sorry Sylvester Stallone isn't going to be as visible as he was last season. Overall the Contender is a great show for boxing fans. It's done very well.

    What an amazing fight between Bravo and Cisneros! I was totally in and out of my seat and screaming at the action. I love a show that gets me involved and yelling. Hats off to Rudy... he gave it all he had. He fought a great fight. He can still hold his head up high on this loss. I saw this episode twice and it affected me the same way the second time around. I look forward to seeing Bravo again. Now, the first fight was a trip. As for Michael Clark,\\\"never underestimate your opponent.\\\" Cockiness will get you creamed!
  • I was anxiously awaiting season 2, and I wasn't disappointed!

    This is a great show. As a person that isn't exactly a fan of boxing, I can honestly say that this show brings a lot to the table. This is about more than just 16 guys fighting it out until there's only one person left. This show allows you to get to know the competitors on a different, more personal level. That is the reason I love this show. You get to know the person behind the boxer, their beliefs, their hunger and determination. Season 2 has taken on a slightly different format than season 1, with the way the fights are determined, proving that the challenges from season 1 weren't necessary. In season 2, the boxers need only prove themselves in the ring to give their team the advantage.

    May the best man win!
  • man this show is awesome oh I can't wait to watch this all over again.

    The Contender is the greatest show in television history. I am so glad that the producers took it over to ESPN for a second life. It went against a lot of top shows on Sunday Night and not a lot of money went into the advertising. Also, the finale show went up against American Idol. I can't figure out what the people at NBC were thinking. It just goes to show you not much because I think that they are the currently the lowest rated network. The show was done so well and Burnett is a genius by getting us into the lives of these fighters. I can't wait until it's return.

  • This show followed the lives of potential middle weight contenders. The stories were touching and boxing was fantastic. The best fight editing ever.

    The Contender is the greatest show in television history. I am so glad that the producers took it over to ESPN for a second life. It went against a lot of top shows on Sunday Night and not a lot of money went into the advertising. Also, the finale show went up against American Idol. I can't figure out what the people at NBC were thinking. It just goes to show you not much because I think that they are the currently the lowest rated network. The show was done so well and Burnett is a genius by getting us into the lives of these fighters. I can't wait until it's return.
  • i loved the series but what is going on after the finale?

    the series was an absolute favorite of mine. i loved all of the finalist. everything was all good until the end. i was disappointed in manfredo in the finale he is a better fighter than what he showed in that finale. but everything was still all good he lost fair and square until..........the rematch.WHAT WAS THAT??? peter won that rematch fight!!! i watched that rematch 3 times on my dvr and i cant beleive the judges really scored that fight in favor of sergio! and then in the pride of providence fight a couple of months ago, sergio actually had the nerve to go to peters fight and talk smack. like really?? come on sergio in your heart of hearts you know you didn't win that fight. i mean really that was bull. i plan on watching season two but if we have another tradgedy like the manfredo/mora rematch fight again i will be done with boxing all together. as it stands ultimate fighting is blowing up and it doesn't have the dishonesty stigma like boxing soooo obviously is envolved with.
  • a great show

    i really liked this show, i hate reality tv but this was different. im a boxing fan and loved the quality of the fights in this show. i found the show really exciting and loved the way the contenders had to live together everyday then fight each other the next. i loved everything about this show, the fighters, the staff, tommy gallagher, sly stallone, sugar ray leonard. my favourite fighters where jesse brinkley and peter manfredo. i also watched the final re-match and am looking forward to another series, although i think thetre never will be another contender series as good as the first. a great show.
  • the contender is the best show on t.v at the momentit is about 16 boxing from around the counrty competing for 1 milloin dollars it is an action packed series you cant miss a secondit is also the best realety show goin arond bring bak a season 2 thank

    the conteder is about 16 boxers fighting for 1 million dollars a west side vs a east side they have to win the challanges to pick the fight againt ure opponent when it gets to the final 8 there is no more teams it will be intersting thank you callan
  • excelente reality show la verdad es el mejor relity show ke he visto en mi vida la verdad muy recomendaable porke aki todo es real y de verdad aki pelean por sus sueños.

    perfecto es la palabra con la ke podria resumir the contender (el retador) porke la verdad lo es mezcla drama real con peleas en verdad muy buenas. este programa es muy recomendable porke te enseña ke siempre debes luchar por tu sueños. yo como soy boxeador me encanto la verdad y al publico y amigos ke konozco tambien les agrada mucho. si en la tv pasaran mas programas como estaos y no su basura televisiva ke a veces pasan la tv seria mucho mejor.
  • The three judges from the rematches should be banned from any judging panel for LIFE. My score you see is 10 for the SHOW, not that farce where those judges obviously lost their minds!

    The three judges from the rematches should be banned from any judging panel for LIFE. My score you see is 10 for the SHOW, not that farce where those judges obviously lost their minds!

    Every one of us knows Fredo' won that fight! Accept it, Sergio! That B.S. at the end of the fight where Mora told Mario Lopez that Peter was being a sore loser was pure hysteria.

    Sergio, you're an extremely intelligent man. Surely by now, after having watched back the tapes of that night, you have been able to ascertain that you lost that fight.

    Granted, you won the Vegas fight, and Peter knew it, but he took that loss and ate, slept, drank, and BREATHED it until the rematch. He came back with a vengeance, beat you fair and square, and didn't even get what was due him. Peter Manfredo deserves a public apology for the slipshod judging that cost him his win!!!

    Anthony Bonsante, where do I start? While it hurts that you also lost due to the facts that those judges must have lost their damn minds that night, I hope you take at least a minuscule measure of comfort in the fact that every LIVING, BREATHING soul in that arena, or in front of their television screens KNOWS you won that fight. I love Jesse Brinkley, but this time he lost!

    Last, Gomez' fight was a little different. I believe wholeheartedly that he would have won anyway, but to stop the fight at the point that they did was ludicrous. His opponent could have gone another couple, and then Gomez' victory at the end would have been that much sweeter!

    All in all, those judges should be thoroughly ashamed of the job they did that night. WE ARE!!!
  • Defintely better than a lot of the current reality shows.

    "The Contender" was and (thanks to ESPN) IS one of the best reality shows on television. Up to par with Emmy winning "The Amazing Race" and the best of "Survivor," "The Contender" brought drama, comedy, and the world of boxing to a new audience. Thankfully, it has a home on ESPN, who will undoubtedly take the show to new heights.
  • Best reality tv show

    The Contender is by far the greatest reality show of all time. Unfortunately due to poor advertising it was somewhat hurt in the ratings. Lucky for us, ESPN has picked it up for a second season. The Contender has everything you would want to have in a tv show. From Drama to Comedy, Suspense and Action, everything is there. The show is not just for "boxing" fans, it is for anyone who is willing to step into the lives of these great boxers and see what they experience. The Contender is also a great show that the family can enjoy. I recommend anyone to give it a chance because it is definitely underrated.
  • How did manfredo lose the contender rematch?

    The contender is an awesome program which i watched religously. Although my personal favourites Ishe Smith and Alfonso Gomez didn't win i was still intrigued with every fight and matchup. And yet fully satisfied with Sergio Mora winning the contender(feeling Peter Manfredo didn't deserve to win considering he was eliminated and only still in the competition because of a second life). I was also satisfied with the judging throughout the competition, citing it was fair and 'who should have won, did win'.

    However, i was completely unsatisfied with the judging in the contender final rematch. Convinced that Manfredo had won (in my view possibly as much as 78-74) i could only pose the question: what match was ths judges watching? (will the two judges which had scored the match against Manfredo). Hometown advantage shouldn't have been given to that extent. It was unfair and bias.

    Tough luck Manfredo, better luck next time.
  • Wow. This was huge for me. To see a re-match of the contenders. Awesome. Contender is or was everything that professional boxing used to be like, back in the sugar ray, duran, hagler days, boxing. not this political blind old judging

    My review by Derek Palsoaari, journalist extrodinar. blah blah. Man I'm a boxing fan, was raised a boxing fan and don't know what to do now that boxing is so wrong. I mean every aspect of it. We have Psycho Mike the cannible, and who was that boxer that had his feelings hurt, during a fight? Then there is the Klichko kooks, dude is that a roman nose? cause it's a roman all over your face. No, these guys are big strong and like to hug, punch then hug, punch then hug. I don't know but the feminine side of Joe Lewis never showed. There is much much more, and I bet you could the reader add a few, thousand.
    Where boxing went wrong was by letting promoters like Don King get bigger than boxing. If Don wants a fight no one I mean no one can stop it from happening. I'd personally like to head butt the guy and I've never met him. Well I'd first shave his head bald then head butt him. There are so many fights being fixed right now roughly 1 out of every 7 major fights has some fixing to it. We used to Pay the PPV prices to see all of boxings main events. Now I wait till it's a re-run or go to someone elses house. Now I don't know if the fights like where Tyson bit Hollyfields ear are all fixed, but that was one of the last PPV fights I paid for.
    Then one day I was sitting in the lazy boy at my house when, I saw this brilliant show and how they picked 16 or so contestants from all over the country to fight for a million bucks. Hell I was ready to try out when I saw that. I can box! Thankfully they were no longer accepting applications. Here was this pure innocent boxing show. Even Ray Lenord was endorsing it. I remember watching the No Mas fight at our house when I was a kid. We lived next door to a mexican family The Carrillos. They loved Duran, hey what hispanic orgined person didn't? Anyhow we watch in amazment at how hard, fast, smart Lenord was. I believe that's when boxing was at it's purest form. I'm not saying boxing wasn't fixed back then but at least it wasn't as often. When I saw a show Lenord was endorsing even a part of then I was SOLD! I watched the entire season never missing a fight. I even had tickets to the main event in Vegas but my stupid sister in law sold us out. When I say us, even my wife was hooked. Now my wife is a princess. I mean camping is a 4 star hotel. And here she is right along with me, rooting for Serg, Fredo sauce, ALFONSO MEHICANO.
    When the rematch was announced I couldn't watch it live. So I Tivo'd it. My brother called and asked if I'd seen it yet. Of course I said no and he immediately told me call me as soon as you watch it. So I watched it. Fonso killed the other guy, I'm not sure they had the right decision to stop it but he was pulverizing the guy. then Jesse and Bosante. Ok I'll give you one, maybe the judges caught a little to much second hand refer? I don't know? How could they miss Bosantes awesome game plan and how well he exicuted it. Oh well, it was the undercard anyway. Sorry Bosante We (wife & I) thought you won.
    Ok. Here comes the main event. Wow Sergio looks good the same. Peter looks great a little better than the previous fight maybe a tad heavier? Come on Serg where's the jab? Dude quit switchin so much. Fredo's on a mission. He looks like a tank that won't be stoped. Fianlly here comes Serg. Yeah, Yeah, upper cut, cupper cut, knock him down Serg. Well babe who do you think won? Peter? Yeah Me too. Even though I don't care for the guy I think he won!
    For 2 fights in a row on espn to go the wrong way, plain and simple $$$$. My 12 year old daughter knew who won that fight How could some Old chick and a couple of geezers miss it, $$$$?
    Peter, never liked ya. Don't know what it is. But dude you boxed your heart out, You were are the winner in 95% of the peoples eyes that watched. Good luck in your career. never give up and prepare for every fight like it's your last.
    I think the wife and I will pass on the next Contender Series. Not that they'll miss us, but until they keep it pure and away from the Vegas Don King type people. We're done.

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