Mayweather-Alvarez bout is richest fight ever
Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s dominating win over Canelo Alvarez was
the richest fight ever, a box-office smash at the arena and on
Showtime said Thursday that at least 2.2 million homes bought
the pay-per-view for the bout, second only to the 2.44 million
homes in Mayweather’s 2007 fight against Oscar De La Hoya.
With the highest pay-per-view boxing price – at an average of
more than $70 – the fight will generate nearly $150 million in
revenue in TV sales alone.
Nevada boxing regulators say the gate for the bout was just more
than $20 million, also a record. A total of 16,146 seats were sold
for the event at an average price of almost $1,240 per ticket.
Promoter Richard Schaefer said total revenues would approach
$200 million upon final count, surpassing the $165 million
generated by the Mayweather-De La Hoya fight.
”You sort of reach for the stars but you don’t always catch
them,” Schaefer said. ”I was reaching for the stars but the way
this fight caught fire surprised everyone.”
Mayweather earned a guaranteed $41.5 million for the fight,
while Alvarez was guaranteed $5 million. Both will make more based
on a percentage of the pay-per-view revenue.
”It will make big paychecks even bigger,” Schaefer said. ”I
don’t know how big but certainly bigger. Much bigger.”
Mayweather was as impressive as the ticket sales, outclassing
Alvarez and winning nearly every round on his way to a majority
decision. He remained unbeaten in 45 fights, while Alvarez lost for
the first time in 44 professional fights.
The fight was a hot ticket from the time it was announced, even
with ringside seats selling for $2,000. Those proved a bargain in
the days leading up to the event when some tickets in the resale
market were being offered for as much as $29,000.
Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Keith Kizer said
that the total gate of just over $20 million eclipsed the $18.4
million earned from 17,000 tickets for the Mayweather-De La Hoya
fight. Both bouts were held at the MGM Grand arena.
Only 50 comp tickets were distributed, and promoters said before
the fight that tickets were in such short supply that celebrities
who normally watch for free were offering to pay.
Showtime said that the 2.2 million PPV figure was a conservative
number, based on preliminary reports from cable and satellite TV
distributors. When fully reported, the network said, the total buys
could challenge the record set by Mayweather and De La Hoya.
Schaefer, head of Golden Boy Promotions, said he knew from the
crowds attending the opening press tour in June that the fight was
going to be big. Golden Boy spent nearly $10 million advertising
the fight, and promoted it heavily in Hispanic markets.
”It just shows you that the health of the sport is good,”
Schaefer said. ”There’s not too many other sports than can
generate $200 million in revenue in one night.”
Golden Boy said previously that the fight generated the highest
rating in Mexican television history, with nearly eight out of 10
households in Mexico tuning in to the free broadcast by
”What I kept on saying to all those negative voices out there
is boxing is still big,” Schaefer said. ”Bigger today maybe than
it has been in a long time.”