Payout Perspective: Pacquiao-Rios

November 25, 2013

Welcome to a special edition of Payout Perspective where we take a look at the return of Manny Pacquiao as he took on Brandon Rios at the Venetian Hotel on the island of Macau off the coast of China.

Pacquiao outclasses Rios

As many had expected, the speed of Manny Pacquiao was too much for Bam Bam. While the threat of the one punch KO was there, the movement and angles of Pacquiao muted any thought of a left hook from Rios.

Let’s pump the brakes on any talk of Floyd Mayweather. First, there’s the Top Rank/Golden Boy-HBO/Showtime schism which would prevent any such fight from happening  Pacquiao looked impressive and it appears that the 11 months away has helped.  Rios is a dangerous fighter but nowhere near the skill level of a Mayweather.  However, a Timothy Bradley fight seems the most logical and reasonable next fight for Pacquiao.

Bradley’s career has ascended since he won that controversial fight over Pacquiao in June 2012.  Most recently, he dispatched of Pacquiao’s arch-nemesis, Juan Manuel Marquez.  Thus, promoting this fight should not be too hard considering this would be a rematch of a controversial decision.  With his post-Pacquiao fights, Bradley has proven that he belongs in the upper tier of boxing.  A return match against Pacquiao could serve as “passing the torch” to Top Rank’s next superstar or will serve as another reason for all parties to wait out Floyd’s Showtime contract.


Zou Shiming Shines

In terms of importance of a boxer winning Saturday, Shiming was a close second behind Pacquiao.  The reason for this is the overarching theme of tapping the Chinese market.  Shiming has the amateur credentials but has not really showed whether he could be a star as a pro.  He dominated his 6 round fight over Juan Tozcana in which the announcing crew questioned whether the fight should have been stopped.

If Shiming could show continued improvement, he has a built in audience and could ascend quickly.  Of course, at 32 years of age, the plan is for him to ascend quickly.


Attendance at the Venetian Hotel in Macau where the event was held was a sellout of 13,200.  No gate figures yet although front row seats were selling for three times the amount that it usually would in Vegas.

In comparison, Pacquiao’s last fight in December 2012 against Marquez had an attendance of 15,430 for a gate of $10.8 million.  However, based on the front row seats going for three times what they do in Vegas, we can see a comparable gate here.


Manny Pacquiao will receive a guaranteed $18 million with the potential for $30 million and does not have to pay the 39.6% U.S. tax since the fight did not happen in the states.  Rios, however, will receive $4 million but will need to pay Uncle Sam because he’s a U.S. citizen.

Pre-Fight Promotion

The incident in the gym between Freddie Roach, Robert Garcia and Alex Ariza provided some “propaganda” for the fight.  Was the dustup manufactured?  It received press and drew some emotions but looked bad for both camps. But, we all can assume the Roach-Ariza bad blood is genuine based on how Pacquiao’s team dispatched of Ariza and he was picked up by Rios.

The 24/7 series was well-done as always.  It seems hard to come up with angles to cover Pacquiao each series although the typhoon and the aforementioned ill-will between camps provided some topics.  We also learned that Rios curses a lot.


The ring sponsors included Smart Communications, a Philippines mobile phone and internet carrier, the movie “Grudge Match” starring DeNiro and Stallone and Tecate. Tecate ran its usual promotion of offering rebates with a purchase of its product.  What was not present was the usual run up for a Pacquiao fight in the states which usual includes in-store promotions and sponsor activation.

Rios wore a Sigue Corporation shirt at weigh-ins. Sigue is a money transfer company specializing in US-Mexico transaction.

As always, Nike sponsored Pacquiao however this article by footwear blog Sole Collector details the little buzz from the swoosh over the Macau fight.  In fact, the online Nike store only has one shirt (from last year) from Pacquiao on sale.  This from a company that rolled out shirts, sweats and shoes for the boxer before past fights. This time, it seemed like the brand was in a “wait and see” mode.  Of course, it also could be due to Pacquiao’s newfound faith in which media outlets have interpreted (or misinterpreted dependent on how you view it) Pacquiao’s stance against gay marriage. Nike supports gay marriage. There were also the comments made by UFC president Dana White claiming the Beaverton, Oregon Company had dropped Pacquiao.

Odds and Ends

As predicted, the price point for Pacquiao in HD was $70.

Due to the time difference, the fight actually took place around lunchtime local time on Sunday which made fight day customs a little skewed.

NY Times writer Greg Bishop had a great piece preceding the fight correlating Pacquiao’s in-ring downturn with the rejuvenation of his religious faith and commitment to his wife.  There is something to be said for the lack of perceived hunger in Pacquiao if you were to compare him now as opposed to pre-Oscar de la Hoya.  Pacquiao was young and reckless socially which mirrored his fighting style.  The style in the ring amounted to interest and success, the style outside of the ring nearly cost him his marriage. After “returning to form” on Saturday, can we say that Pacquiao is born again boxing-wise?

Bishop also wrote an informative article on the logistical obstacles HBO and Top Rank faced in producing a PPV abroad.  This included bringing 300 cases of equipment by air and water to the location.

There were some that thought that the Carl Froch-George Graves fight should have been picked up by HBO to use as an appetizer for the fight later that night.  It would have been nice but would have run the risk of being “UFC”-like in having too much boxing on in one day.


Despite the lack of buzz and usual American “over the top” promotion, “The Clash in Cotai” had a purpose.  First, it was to reintroduce the world to Manny Pacquiao. The statement was that he was back to his “old” self.  More importantly, it was an opportunity to enter the fertile Macau market with its casinos bringing in $38 billion in 2012  and likely more this year.  Bob Arum would like to open up this region as a way to leverage it against Vegas as an option to hold a fight here.  Certainly, it would benefit Pacquiao as its closer to home and he saves on paying U.S. taxes if his fights are held outside of the U.S.  That being said, the costs for HBO/Top Rank to hold a show outside of the U.S. along with Pacquiao’s hefty payout may be something it needs to consider before committing time, money and resources to another fight in Macau.

For its first time holding a PPV overseas,  it’s likely that Pacquiao’s return will grab at least 850,000-950,000 buys.

15 Responses to “Payout Perspective: Pacquiao-Rios”

  1. Machiel Van on November 25th, 2013 10:32 AM

    Great performance from the Pacman!

  2. Jason Cruz on November 25th, 2013 10:40 AM


    Agreed. Arum said next fight in April 2014. I am hoping its Bradley.

  3. Tops of on November 25th, 2013 11:44 AM


    Manny Pacquiao Career Earnings Will Reach $300 Million With Rios Fight

  4. AK on November 25th, 2013 7:39 PM

    40% right off the top?? Talk about RAPE!? So what’s the Left’s solution to this? Jack the taxes up even higher for all these “evil” corporations and rich people. Yea, that’ll entice em. Pure brilliance…if you don’t take history and human nature into account.

  5. AK on November 25th, 2013 7:47 PM

    Did anybody tune in to the weigh-ins? My goooodness it was excruciatingly boring. Was it Top Rank’s first time at the rodeo? I think the Strikeforce weigh-ins had significantly better production and entertainment value.

  6. Jason Cruz on November 25th, 2013 9:34 PM


    I watched the weigh-ins and I think the UFC does a better job with providing some entertainment value in their weigh-ins. But, Top Rank does give you the models.

  7. Todd on November 26th, 2013 7:41 AM

    850-900,000 PPV buys is a gross overstatement.

    Expectations are in the range of 500-600,000 buys.

  8. AK on November 26th, 2013 4:31 PM

    Hey Jason, the “better job” would be a massive understatement. I mean HOW hard would it be to pump music? That’s like…common sense. Also, I know this may sound funny, but how the models were forced to hold a fake, full-on smile for a full hour made me a bit uncomfortable. What is this, North Korea? It’s not like the UFC makes their girls hold a fake smile for a full hour (though Strikeforce did).

  9. Jason Cruz on November 26th, 2013 4:37 PM

    And now there’s this…despite Pacquiao’s reported payout on Saturday, he’s essentially out of money.–spt.html

  10. DocOc on November 27th, 2013 10:07 AM

    That is what happens when you are too generous and are spending too much on your entourage. Then when you are all out of money you look around and everyone has abandoned you, except for all of your babies mamas who want child support for your eight kids. Paging Evander Holyfield.

  11. DocOc on November 27th, 2013 10:12 AM

    With that said: it is possible that Jason has been trolled successfully by the Phillipine government. Apparently there is a sizable contingent that believes this is merely a smear campaign by the Phillipine govt in retaliation for Manny supporting the main opposition party. Only time will tell.

  12. Diego on November 27th, 2013 12:16 PM

    It also wouldn’t surprise me if he has millions in offshore accounts and just can’t repatriate it.

  13. BrainSmasher on November 27th, 2013 10:29 PM

    It sounds like Pacman needs a UFC to look out for him. All that so called money boxers get paid any it doesn’t do many of them any good. It seems 99% of boxers file bankruptcy.

  14. lee stotts on November 30th, 2013 3:39 AM

    How the hell can manny ever be bankrupt or broke he,searned over 200 mil in guaranteed purses n thats without the ppv sales percentage he lives in a 55 grand mansion in the phillipines which is like a palace n also has a 3 mil mansion in the u.s,,granted there is a lot i ov hangers on half which he does,nt need he,s got a 20 strong securityteam plus he loves his bets on the cockfights n cardgames but how can u blow all ov your carreer earnings,,,he,has a percentage ov his purses that go into an account n he gets the coin in 15 yrs ,,,,if arum is lookin after him which he shud be coz he,s been sly bobs main cashcow for over7 yrs n still has at least 3 more fights left then he,ll be rich his whole life ,,,,he only got took 13 pct in china against rios wen its over 30 pct in nevada,,,,

  15. lee stotts on November 30th, 2013 3:49 AM

    Forgot to say that im glad 4 rios gettin the exposure against manny n the payday which is 4 mil n a ppv percentage hes earned it the kid is a warrior he,ll do well in his career he will always get a mil a fight n he has a good few left he,s like gatti a true fighter ,,rios is a beast but gatti was the true warrior,,r.i.p,,,, he shud fight ruslan next shud brandon or even a 3rd fight wiv alvarado,,,manny will probs fight bradley next but tim only has 1 fight left under top rank so he mite do a mandatory then fight floyd n go to golden boy,,more coin,,,,so it cud be ruslan n manny its a good time 4 the welters n j welters,,,,,big up to stockton on tees,, teeside yesssssa,lol

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