This event may well have changed our sport and done much to put it where it is today. The fact that Barry is still so closely involved, and has just shepherded the PDC through the COVID-19 crisis, decries the rather crude, cash focused, way the article reads.
Although the famous “I smell money” quote seems to be accurate, there cannot be much doubt that Barry genuinely like darts and understands its fans and supporters.
The more revealing sections are the statement that he was going to provide the TV people with 250 hours of coverage and boost the player’s earnings. A later documentary showed how barry had spotted that satellite TV, and other new media, would need many hours of superb content that viewers and advertisers would invest time and money into.
Named “The King of C1 Sports” due to his success with snooker and boxing Hearn would today be thought more as “The C2DE” games. The classification of socioeconomic groups may change but the formula used to revitalise these activities does not.
During a conversation with Barry a few years ago he relayed how he was trying to rebrand snooker in a similar way to the style he had perfected with darts.
Promises made, promises kept. It cannot be doubted that professional darts is in a far better shape in 2020 than it was in 1995. Much of that is thanks to ‘Uncle’ Barry Hearn.