Mayweather Payout Perspective
May 7, 2013
Welcome to a special edition of Payout Perspective where we take a look at Floyd Mayweather’s latest fight since last May as he took on Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mayweather fights technical masterpiece against Guerrero
It wasn’t exciting but Mayweather showed that he still has it. While Guerrero had his moments, Mayweather took a bulk of the rounds to win by unanimous decision.
One might have thought a change in trainers from Roger Mayweather to Floyd Sr. might have hurt. Aside from forgetting his mouthpiece before a round, there were no issues.
Floyd now has a choice of challengers set for September 14th in Vegas with the prospect of a huge fight with Canelo Alvarez coming May 2014.
Mares takes out friend De Leon
The best fight of the PPV main card was the penultimate fight of the night which featured two friends with the same manager fighting. Abner Mares knocked out Ponce De Leon in the 9th round. Arguably, Mares is the best 126 pound fighter out there outside of Nonito Donaire (a fight that was nixed due to a stall in negotiations) or Guillermo Rigondeaux (who defeated Donaire in March).
UFC fighters should look at these fighters as they put aside their friendship to meet.
Attendance and gate
According to Dan Rafael of ESPN, attendance was a sellout at 15,880 fans and a gate of $9.9 million (via Kevin Iole). The numbers are slightly better than Mayweather’s September 2011 against Victor Ortiz (13,364/$9M).
Promotion of the Fight
This was the first fight Mayweather has had under his deal with Showtime and it appeared that he was on his best behavior to show CBS/Showtime executives he was worth the money.
The only real controversial beef was Ruben Guererro’s tirade over Floyd Mayweather and Sr.’s response. Aside from this flare-up, there was a generated “green screen” trash talk sessions between the two fighters early on but nothing as the fight grew closer.
Mayweather made an appearance during CBS’ Final Four to start the ball rolling for the fight. Showtime had a four part All Access show which was widely available online for those not subscribers of Showtime. CBS also featured Mayweather in a 1 hour special the Saturday before the fight. That documentary did poorly as it was last in its timeslot among network shows.
Aside from the “May Day” commercials, the Mayweather fight was even promoted on room keys and “Do Not Disturb” signs in the MGM Grand.
The Audience Network showed the Mosley-Mayweather fight and the Aydin-Guerrero fight the preceding the weigh-ins to get fans ready for Saturday.
Mayweather will make $32 million from Saturday’s fight while Roberto Guerrero will make $3 million. The $32 million reported to the Nevada State Athletic Commission does not include the ancillary money Mayweather (and possibly Guerrero to a lesser extent) will make from PPV buys, closed circuit revenues, etc.
O’Reilly Auto Parts and Corona were the two key sponsors for the fight. O’Reilly did promotions within its stores and Corona provided promos in-stores where Corona was sold. I don’t believe that there were discounts on the PPV as is customary where Tecate promotes events.
ATT, Valvoline and Star Trek’s “Into Darkness” were sponsors on the mat and above the ring.
As is tradition, Mayweather did not wear any sponsors on his trunks for his fight although he did have Reebok ring shoes. He also wore Reebok gear during the Showtime All Access show.
Roberto Guerrero had multiple sponsors on including Shoe Palace which was the most visible of sponsors during the All Access show. He also had Brabble.com on the front of his shorts as well – a social media video sharing site. He also wore a “God is Great” shirt to the ring which had sponsor California Superstores on the back.
Odds and ends
In addition to PPV and closed circuit, the fight was shown in theaters via NCM Fathom which is the same company the UFC partners with to show its fights in movie theaters.
I was impressed with Paulie Maglignaggi’s television analysis. I haven’t seen him before and thought he brought more info than most experts. Former MMA announcer Mauro Ranallo did an impressive job on the call too. During the survey of stars in the crowd, Ranallo called Neil Patrick Harris’ character on How I Met Your Mother (sidenote: can that guy meet his wife already to end the series) Barry Stinson instead of Barney Stinson. Ranallo actually corrected himself later in the broadcast. I think since CBS is paying for it, might want to get the character names right.
How did the promotion of the fight compare with an HBO promotion? The traditional all access shoulder programming was distributed freely online (i.e., if you looked for it you could legally see it for free) as opposed to the multiple showings of HBO’s 24/7 on CNN and other Time Warner networks. The production was different and I thought the announcing team overall was better than HBO’s usual cast.
Dan Rafael and Kevin Iole (via Bad Left Hook) are both reporting that the PPV buys may be under a million which would be considered a disappointment considering its the first Mayweather fight in a year. Perhaps the lack of buzz, the lack of name-worthy opponent and Mayweather’s lack of brashness attributed to poor PPV buys. Of course, the practical aspect of a $70 PPV to watch just one fight probably contributed to the poor sales. We will see what this means for the future of what Sh