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Showtime Punches Up Stephen Espinoza to Sports and Event Programming President

Showtime Networks has elevated Stephen Espinoza to president of its Sports and Event Programming group, the network said Wednesday.

Espinoza, who was previously executive vice president and general manager of the group, will continue to develop and execute the overall strategy of the group, known mostly for its live boxing telecasts. In 2017 alone, Showtime produced 33 world championship fights and 71 live bouts – twice as many as any other outlet, according to the network.

In addition, the network has been involved in the two biggest pay-per-view fights of all time -- the 2015 Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight (4.6 million PPV buys) and the Aug. 2017 Maywether-McGregor fight (4.3 million buys).

“Simply stated, Stephen is the heavyweight champion of his profession,” said David Nevins, president and CEO of Showtime Networks, in a statement. “He is an innovator, equal parts thoughtful and tenacious, who has turned Showtime boxing into the market leader, while also driving excellence in our documentaries and sports series.”

Related: B&C Sports Executive of the Year: Showtime's Stephen Espinoza and UFC's Dana White Deliver a Knockout Fight 

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.