Can you believe that it’s been over 6 years since the most lucrative and financially successful event took place in the world of combat sports? Seems like only yesterday that Michigan’s, Floyd Mayweather, versus the Philippines’, Manny Pacquiao, match-up wasn’t even going to happen because of all the issues between rivaling promoters. After a strategic six years of build-up it did materialize but, to this day people argue that it wasn’t even worth the wait or the PPV price. Maybe that’s why there was never a sequel?
Anyhow, lets jump into the Battle MMA time machine to reminisce on the success of “The Fight of the Century” which made time stand still in the sport of boxing while making cash registers spin out of control.
(Cue angelic harp music, rippling screen effect and cha-ching sounds)
First things first – the tickets available to the public were gone in 60 seconds, just ask Nicholas Cage. The base priced stub retailed for $1,500.00 then ended up on secondary markets for $6,000.00 or $7,000.00. Tickets somewhat close to the floor of the MGM Grand Garden Arena inside the MGM Grand casino sold for around
$19,500.00 with premium floor seats fetching brokers a price of around a quarter of a million dollars. Obviously, there were bootleggers selling counterfeit event t-shirts as well as tickets to the event. Las Vegas Metro Police was escalated to “New Year’s Eve” type of duty; anyone not on vacation worked that May 2nd of 2015 night , no exceptions.
The high rollers came into the Vegas desert in full force creating a headache for the employees at McCarran Airport. The staff had never experienced such an influx of private flights resulting in a mini-traffic jam due to the wealthy people in town needing immediate accommodations. Cable provider’s phone services across the USA had multiple systems crash as last-minute boxing fans ordered the PPV. In order to not miss out on revenue Showtime & HBO PPV delayed the event about an hour to nab every single customer possible. It did 4.6 million PPV buys resulting in $410 million in revenue. I will never forget the promoter’s words that “it would not cost more than 100 dollars”. Event merchandise was released two weeks prior to the event, something that was never done before, as a pop-up store was built in the middle of the MGM main lobby. Merchandise sold raked in over half a million dollars for MayPac.
What wasn’t raked in were happy campers once the dust settled. The general public was unhappy with the results since 3-1 betting favorite, Mayweather, cruised to a unanimous decision over Pacquiao. Manny later blamed his poor performance on an injured shoulder that required surgery.
Fast forward to today and both men are still fighting well into their 40s; Pinoy icon Manny Pacquiao versus top guys and Floyd Mayweather in exhibition bouts to cash in on his living legend status.
Thanks for tuning in to another episode of Battle MMA nostalgia boys and girls. Check the fight out and tell us if it was worth the price and hype?