TUF 18 salaries: Losers make more than winners

December 2, 2013

MMA Junkie reports the TUF 18 salaries from Saturday night.  Gray Maynard and Nate Diaz were the top earners in a payroll of only $312,000 disclosed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

Via MMA Junkie:

Nate Diaz: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Gray Maynard: $45,000

Julianna Pena: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Jessica Rakoczy: $8,000

Chris Holdsworth: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Davey Grant: $8,000

Jessamyn Duke: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Peggy Morgan: $8,000

Raquel Pennington: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Roxanne Modafferi: $8,000

Akira Corassani: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Maximo Blanco: $17,000

Tom Niinimaki: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Rani Yahya: $20,000

Jared Rosholt: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Walter Harris: $8,000

Sean Spencer: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Drew Dober: $8,000

Josh Sampo: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Ryan Benoit: $8,000

Payout Perspective:

It turns out  that Ryan Benoit was the top earner of the night with $108,000.  He received Josh Sampo’s FOTN bonus due to Sampo missing weight.  A lot of $8K/$8K contracts here with Diaz’s $30K being the top winning payout.  Interesting to see that Maynard made 3x more than Diaz’s base ($45K v. $15K).  Diaz made $50K flat at UFC on Fox 5 last December but now is only making $15K to show.

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.

10-the-clash-in-cotai

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

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.

Paydays

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.

Sponsorships

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.

Conclusion

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.

Pacquiao could make $30M Saturday in HBO PPV first event overseas

November 23, 2013

The NY Times reports that Manny Pacquiao could earn close to $30 million on Saturday night when he fights Brandon Rios in his return to the ring.  The article also addresses the many obstacles on putting on a PPV abroad.

Pacquiao is guaranteed $18 million with “an upside closer to $30 million.”  More important is that unlike his U.S. fights, he will not have to pay U.S. taxes.  Pacquiao would have been taxed in the highest U.S. tax bracket (39.6 percent).

The scheduling is the biggest change from American events as the fight will take place Sunday around noon.  Thus, the fighters will have to change their usual customs on fight day.

HBO “shipped in 300 cases of equipment.”  This included even makeup for on-air talent in the event they could not get it locally.  Instead of the regular 100 employees used for fight night, 40 employees were flown in to deal with logistics of engineering and production.

Payout Perspective:

Pacquiao’s salary pales in comparison to Floyd Mayweather’s payout of over $40 million in his last fight with Canelo Alvarez.  Still, Pacquiao will not have to pay taxes on almost 40 percent of his earnings.  With all of the investment HBO is doing for this PPV the payoff is the potential future it may have in China.  Chinese boxer Zou Shiming who main evented Top Rank’s rehearsal in the area with two fights this year will be on the undercard and will likely grab almost as much fanfare as Pacquiao.  If the card does well, it will provide an alternative that Bob Arum can use as leverage in the future.  Certainly if Pacquiao wins, his next fight may be closer to home.

UFC 167: Payout Perspective

November 19, 2013

Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective.  In this edition, we take a look at the big 20th Anniversary Show of UFC 167 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Bruised and battered but GSP wins split decision

If you disagree with the decision review the 1st round because it appears that is the round where two judges scored it for GSP and 1 for Hendricks.  The rest of the rounds the judges agreed.  It was a close call, but ties go to the Champion.  Of course that’s not how it’s scored but many probably came to that conclusion on Saturday night.

Who do we blame? The Nevada State Athletic Commission for the judges?  The judges themselves? Hendricks’ corner for not telling him to keep pressing? Or do we chalk this one up to a bad decision?  Then again, was it a bad decision?

While the judging may have been suspect, based upon how the 10-9 scoring system, it was a plausible outcome.

Two items from the actual match between GSP-Hendricks.  There was the theory of a phantom tap by Hendricks during the match spotted by many.  But GSP did not stop and did not argue a tap.  Looking back at Bendo-Pettis, even if a tap is not detected by the referee, the fighters would likely have stopped themselves.  You may recall that Bendo lost his title this past August when he verbally submitted to Pettis although the ref did not stop the fight immediately.  It seems like guys like Hendricks and GSP would have the sportsmanship to admit if a tap had occurred.

Also, it appeared as though Hendricks had yelled out that GSP was either holding the fence or his shorts on the ground as a way to keep position during a scramble on the ground in the 5th round.  Yet, there was nothing done in that instance.  Perhaps this was some desperation by GSP in trying to keep position on Hendricks.

And now for the post-fight story.  Give Joe Rogan credit for not giving the stock platitudes in the post-fight interview and actually pressing GSP.  Even though he didn’t get the answer, Rogan saw GSP wanted to say something and followed up with questions.

One of the reasons Dana White was so hot at the post-fight press conference was that he was not given (official) notice that GSP was leaving.  Thus, he was mad at the commission and its judges.  If Hendricks won, White would not have been steamed.  He would have had a new marketable champion and could give GSP the time off to do what he needed.  According to reports, White was able to speak with GSP after the post-fight press conference (GSP was not at the press conference at the beginning).  One might deduce their discussion was an attempt to get to the bottom of the cryptic statements GSP made in the Octagon and persuade him to not take a leave of absence.  TMZ has reported the alleged personal issues of GSP (which is in part being denied according to a report picked up by Bloody Elbow). We shall see what becomes of this situation and how GSP will address what now is becoming a public story.

UFC 167

Evans pounds out Sonnen

It was quick work by Evans who destroyed Sonnen with a flurry of punches on the ground in the first round. There was a little hope that that this would be a good match considering Sonnen’s last outing against Shogun Rua.  Then after Evans took Sonnen down there was little hope that it would last past round 1.  Evans looked rejuvenated from a poor outing against Little Nog in February and a so-so performance in June.  Does it mean he’s somewhere in the Light Heavyweight title picture?  We’ll have to wait.  As for Sonnen, he gets a TUF Brazil coaching spot and Wanderlei Silva.

Lawler jumps back into title picture after upset

Not a good night for the Tri-Star Gym.  Not only is GSP out indefinitely, its “next in line” was upset by resurgent Robbie Lawler.  MacDonald is still very young and will be back but for Lawler it was a definite step forward. Lawler is 3-0 since coming over from Strikeforce. As Lawler proposed at the post-fight press conference, maybe a Hendricks-Lawler fight could be in the future.

Attendance and Gate

As reported, the gate was the best since UFC 148 at the MGM.  14,856 were in attendance for a $5.7 million gate.  Although not factored in the actual number, the secondary market had its biggest demand since 2009 with an average of $580 per ticket.  But, it does show the demand for this event.

Bonuses

Bonuses were the standard $50,000 each and were GSP-Hendricks, Donald Cerrone for his sub of Evan Dunham and Tyron Woodley for his highlight reel KO of Josh Koscheck.

Reported Salaries

The Nevada State Athletic Commission released the UFC 167 salaries and as expected Georges St. Pierre topped the payroll earning $400,000 with no win bonus although GSP earned a FOTN bonus making his total earnings $450,000.  Johny Hendricks earned $50,000 for his split decision loss but did pick up another $50,000 to top out at $100,000.

UFC Primetime

While the viewership for the UFC Primetime series has been down since moving to FS1, they were well-done this time around as it introduced you to Johny Hendricks.  I think the introduction of the challenger in these programs is important and Hendricks came off as a likeable guy. I also like the spotlight they did on Firas Zahabi as you don’t get to hear too much about the story behind some of the trainers.

Sponsors

The sponsors in the Octagon included Assassin’s Creed IV “Black Flag”, MusclePharm, UltimatePoker.net, Harley Davidson, Dodge, Toyo Tires, the movie Grudge Match, Alienware, MusclePharm and Bud Light in the center. Corn Nuts and MetroPCS had its usual placements within the PPV broadcast.

Reebok signed Johny Hendricks to wear its logo into the Octagon for UFC 167.  Hendricks wore Reebok crossfit shorts and had a walkout shirt via Reebok.  Also, Hendricks sported its shoes and promoted them via social media.  A lot was made that Reebok paid the sponsor fee for Hendricks but did not for Rampage when it was announced Reebok would be sponsoring Hendricks.  We will see if Reebok continues to sponsor Hendricks and/or other fighters.

Hendricks did have UFC official sponsors Corn Nuts and Alienware as his sponsors in addition to Bass Pro Shops and “Rags to Rick,” a  Comedy reality show.

GSP wore his Hayabusa gi (no controversy this time) to the Octagon and his corner wore Affliction.

It was the first time that I’ve seen PS4 advertised during a UFC broadcast.  This may not sit well with Mighty Mouse’s primary sponsor, Microsoft’s Xbox.

Robbie Lawler was sponsored by the Air Force Reserve.  It’s an interesting sponsor considering that some pushed to curtail U.S. military sport sponsorships earlier this year.

Interesting sponsor of the night:  Rick Story was sponsored by PaleoRanch.com.

Post-Fight Headlines

What’s going to happen without GSP?  An interim title will likely happen if GSP is out for a prolonged period of time. In addition to Hendricks, Robbie Lawler, Carlos Condit, Matt Brown and maybe Nick Diaz will be names to look for in the welterweight division. The loss of GSP is a hit for the UFC which now may have 3 of its champions out for extended periods of time (GSP would join Dominick Cruz who plans to be back after a long absence from injury and the recently injured Anthony Pettis).  This doesn’t even include what may be happening with Jon Jones.  We shall see what the UFC plans to do with the welterweight division in GSP’s absence.

20th Anniversary

It was the 20th Anniversary show and with it came the UFC retrospective show last week on FS1.  It was well done and gave some detail of the early years for those of us that picked it up in the Zuffa days.  The weekend also included some notable fighters over the years in attendance. The UFC also bought a special advertising section in the Sports Business Journal which told the UFC’s story and gave it some added publicity.

Odds and Ends

-Erik Perez rocked the Lucha Libre mask once again.

-Was this the first time that they dropped the lights during a main event for Bruce Buffer to announce the fighters?

-GSP has been with the company for a while, shouldn’t the UFC have a French interpreter so that Georges doesn’t have to interpret for the entire room during press conferences.

-First time I recall FS1 insets on PPVs.  Speaking of FS1, the Prelims did the double screen in between rounds with showing the corner at the top right hand of the screen during a commercial.

-Tyron Woodley made a statement with his KO of Josh Koscheck.

-Seemingly, Rory MacDonald had the most sponsors ever seen on shorts.  If the UFC allowed for spats, he could have made a killing.

-Arnold Schwarzeneger was in the crowd…and to the benefit of Ali Bagautinov who admitted at the post-fight presser that he is a big fan.

-Boxing fans know Edwin Rodriguez? Despite getting docked $200K for missing weight in his fight with Andre Ward on Saturday he would be the second highest paid fighter on the UFC 167 card. This assumes GSP salary plus PPV upside.  Rodriguez made $800K after the $200K deduction.

-Forbes ran a piece on GSP and how he makes $12 million a year.  We will have more on that this week.

Conclusion

GSP is the company’s biggest draw.  And while we cannot conclude that a higher gate will equate to a higher PPV buy rate, the rumors that GSP could be fighting in his last fight may have prodded folks to pay the money to watch one of the best in the sport in his last match.  Additionally, the main event was well-supported on paper by Evans-Sonnen and Lawler-MacDonald.  While the UFC had hoped the last four PPVs of 2013 would have done well, it will get 2 of the 4 doing a good number.  I would say UFC 167 would do somewhere in the 800K range and GSP once again comes through for the company.

GSP tops the UFC 167 payday roster

November 18, 2013

MMA Junkie reports the salaries for Saturday’s UFC 167 event at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Georges St. Pierre topped the UFC roster with a reported $400,000.

MMA Junkie reports as revealed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission:

Georges St-Pierre: $400,000 (no win bonus)
def. Johny Hendricks: $50,000

Rashad Evans: $250,000 (includes $125,000 win bonus)
def. Chael Sonnen: $100,000

Robbie Lawler: $166,000 (includes $83,000 win bonus)
def. Rory MacDonald: $50,000

Tyron Woodley: $104,000 (includes $52,000 win bonus)
def. Josh Koscheck: $78,000

Ali Bagautinov: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Tim Elliott: $12,000

Donald Cerrone: $96,000 (includes $48,000 win bonus)
def. Evan Dunham: $25,000

Thales Leites: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Ed Herman: $40,000

Rick Story: $54,000 (includes $27,000 win bonus)
def. Brian Ebersole: $18,000

Erik Perez: $36,000 (includes $18,000 win bonus)
def. Edwin Figueroa: $12,000

Jason High: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Anthony Lapsley: $8,000

Sergio Pettis: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Will Campuzano: $10,000

Gian Villante: $38,000 (includes $19,000 win bonus)
def. Cody Donovan: $8,000

Payout Perspective:

No win bonus for GSP but it’s likely he gets a PPV upside.  He actually received $450,000 if you include his Fight of the Night Bonus.  Also, Woodley received $154,000 (so the holidays should be good for his family as he pleaded for the bonus in his post-fight Octagon interview) and Cerrone topped out at $146,000 with his sub bonus.  Evans still a top earner with a  $125K base and another $125K win incentive.

Stay tuned for more information from UFC 167 in its Payout Perspective.

 

UFC Fight Night 31 bonuses

November 6, 2013

MMA Junkie reports the bonuses from Wednesday’s special UFC Fight Night 31.  Tim Kennedy led the list of winners with his KO of Rafael Natal in the main event.

The bonuses were announced by Dana White at the post-fight press conference.  As always, each received $50,000 for their bonus:

KO of the Night:  Tim Kennedy

Submission of the Night:  Michael Chiesa

Fight of the Night: Jorge Masvidal-Rustam Khabilov

Payout Perspective:

Overall, it was an impressive afternoon of fights for the troops in Fort Campbell.  Lorenz Larkin-Chris Carmozzi could have won FOTN but for Khabilov’s impressive spinning kick.  Derek Brunson, in the first fight on the card could have been a candidate for Sub of the Night as well.

UFC 164 salaries: Heavyweights top payroll

October 11, 2013

MMA Junkie reports the salaries from August’s UFC 164 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  Frank Mir and Josh Barnett topped the payroll of over $1.1 million.

Via MMA Junkie:

Anthony Pettis: $54,000 (includes $27,000 win bonus)
def. Benson Henderson: $110,000

Josh Barnett: $160,000 (no win bonus)
def. Frank Mir: $200,000

Chad Mendes: $62,000 (includes $31,000 win bonus)
def. Clay Guida: $44,000

Ben Rothwell: $108,000 (includes $54,000 win bonus)
def. Brandon Vera: $70,000

Dustin Poirier: $40,000 (includes $20,000 win bonus)
def. Erik Koch: $15,000

Gleison Tibau: $74,000 (includes $37,000 win bonus)
def. Jamie Varner: $17,000

Tim Elliott: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Louis Gaudinot: $8,000

Hyun Gyu Lim: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Pascal Krauss: $15,000

Chico Camus: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Kyung Ho Kang: $8,000

Soa Palelei: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Nikita Krylov: $8,000

Al Iaquinta: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Ryan Couture: $15,000

Magnus Cedenblad: $12,000 (includes $6,000 win bonus)
def. Jared Hamman: $14,000

Payout Perspective:

It’s interesting to see that Pettis only made $27,000 (plus $27,000 win) for his win to secure the Lightweight Title.  Then again, Chris Weidman had a $24,000 base (plus $24,000 win) for his upset victory over Anderson Silva.  Former Champion, Benson Henderson made $110,000 which is a $10,000 raise from his last fight at UFC on Fox 7.  Barnett had no win bonus but earned $160,000 flat.  Mir made the most on the card and based on his last three fights his $200,000 guarantee may be a little too much.  Brandon Vera made $70,000 for his loss to Ben Rothwell but its unlikely Vera will be let go.

Mayweather-Canelo fight hits 2.2M PPV buys according to Showtime

September 19, 2013

Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports reports that “The One,” the fight between Floyd Mayweather, Jr and Canelo Alvarez will do about 2.2 million PPV units in the U.S. for $150 million making it the highest grossing boxing PPV ever.  As a result, its believed that Floyd Mayweather could make $70-80 million while Alvarez will make well over $10 million.

Another 26,000 fans watched the fight on closed circuit for a gate of $2.62 million.

According to the Iole article, in Mexico the fight airing on Televisa received a 41.1 rating and 71 share equating to 22.1 million viewers.

While Showtime believes that Mayweather will pocket almost double his guaranteed $41.5 million, Leonard Ellerbee believes Mayweather could make $100 million.

Payout Perspective:

The price of the PPV and the added ways to watch were likely culprits of why it was not going to surpass the PPV buy record.  Still, 2.2 million PPV buys is an incredible number considering the hefty $75 HD price.  The strong numbers from Mexican fans means that Canelo Alvarez has arrived.  While we reported that he was guaranteed $12 million (he actually was guaranteed $5 million), it now looks like he will probably surpass that $12 million figure.

“The One” Payout Perspective

September 16, 2013

Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective.  This time we look at “The One,” the fight between Canelo Alvarez and Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

Mayweather dominates in Majority Decision

The look on Mayweather’s face when a Majority Decision was announced was not worth the $75 PPV price tag but it was still pretty good.  Notably, CJ Ross judged the Pacquiao-Bradley fight which makes one wonder if there are no other qualified judges out there.

The 36 year old did what he does in muting a game Canelo Alvarez.  While the judges may have thought it close, there was never a time that Mayweather looked to be in trouble.

Mayweather has indicated that he would like to fight Cinco de Mayo weekend 2014 with Danny Garcia and/or the winner of Amir Khan/Devon Alexander fight. A Khan fight may be the most entertaining based on the styles.  A Danny Garcia fight might be the best for promoting the fight with Angel Garcia and Floyd Sr. as sideshow entertainment.

Alvarez had a decent showing yet it would be hard to find a round you can say he won. People liked his utter disregard for Mayweather’s pleasantries which manifested itself with Canelo refusing to hold the belt with Mayweather post-weigh-in, during the fight a shoulder bump after a Mayweather liver shot and a low blow after having his head pushed down.

MayweatherVsCanelo

Garcia defeats Matthysse in slugfest

Angel Garcia is the father and mouthpiece for Danny Garcia and vowed he’d cut his own head off if his son would lose.  Although Matthysse was the challenger, he was the favorite coming into the fight.  But, Garcia was able to dominate Matthysse despite getting his mouthpiece knocked out (and replayed in slow motion) in the 11th round.  Garcia eventually dropped Matthysse in the same round.

Garcia is an understated champion and hopefully with all the viewers for this event, he’ll grab some fans.

Attendance, gate, etc.

The MGM Grand was a sellout of 16,746 for a record gate of $20,003,150.  The gate was an all-time record.

Moreover, the weigh-ins was at capacity with 12,200 people coming to watch the fighters get on the scale.

Closed circuit viewing of the event in Vegas were a sellout with tickets going for $100 and being sold for $150 on the secondary market.  Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports tweeted that Richard Schaefer indicated that it was a sellout with 26,355 tickets sold.

In addition, more bars across the nation showed the fight and the fight was available in more movie theatres (500) this time around.

Promotion of Fight

An unprecedented 11 city press tour which brought out thousands of fans.  So big was the fight that the Garcia-Matthysse fight was to have its own mini-press tour.

The four episode All Access Showtime show was available online so even if you did not have Showtime, you could check it out.  Nothing dramatic in these episodes, but a good primer for the fight. It was interesting that CBS did not show any of these episodes on the network.

One of the more underrated promotional tools for the fight is CBS Sports Network, Showtime and the 101 Network airing previous Canelo and Mayweather fights.  The best thing about it.  You get to see free PPV-quality fights.

ESPN The Magazine had a “Fight Issue” dedicated to the event and the LA Times also had a special section for “The One.”

Despite all of the platforms to watch the fight, PPV remains the central part of the business.  Although it was a $75 price tag (in HD), expectations are that PPV will exceed 2 million buys.

Via Forbes:

If the bout does hit its ambitious PPV goals, credit the all-out marketing blitz that mixes target markets with mass markets, and high tech with old school media and promotions. In addition to the natural Hispanic market, promoters say they’re going heavily after the youth and female markets, the better to take advantage of Alvarez’s youth and good looks.

On Wednesday or Thursday of fight week, various athletes and stars tweeted out the fact that they had ordered “The One.”  After comparing the tweets, it was obvious that it was part of a social marketing campaign for people to buy the PPV early.

 

Sponsors

The sponsors in the ring included AT&T, Nature Nutrition, Valvoline, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Mexico (we assume the tourism board), Fred Loya Insurance and Corona in the center.  Mexico sponsored the scale at the weigh-ins.

This event included record promotional spending of which CBS supported Showtime with $15-$20 million of promotional spots.

Valvoline offered a $35 rebate for the PPV if you purchased 5 quarts of motor oil.  O’Reilly Auto parts was the presenting sponsor at movie theatres showing the fight.  Corona had promotional displays at 15,000 stores in 32 states.

Canelo Alvarez’s sponsors included Under Armour which included a variety of workout shirts and his ring shoes (via FigherxFashion).  Online sales of his shirts were going at a swift pace.

Danny Garcia’s shorts was a sponsor’s nightmare.  It was hard to see the sponsors on his trunks unless you absolutely focused on them.  I could make out Western Union as one of his sponsors.  Also, Garcia had a Jumpman logo on the front of his trunks but wore Adidas ring shoes.

As if he needed more money, Floyd Mayweather pitched his line of “Money Wear” including shirts starting at $35 and his “TBE” hat going for $70.

Odds and Ends

-The weigh-ins included walk-ins for Matthysse, Garcia, Alvarez and Mayweather.  No one took advantage of the walk-in more than Angel Garcia.

-Lil’ Wayne and Justin Bieber walked to ringside with Mayweather which made him the obvious choice as villain for the main event.  Wayne rapped his way down to the ring without a shirt.  He also watched the entire fight without a shirt either.

-Maybe one of the harder shots Danny Garcia took was when his father hit him in the ear between rounds to wake him up.

-”USA, USA” chants were booed down by the pro-Canelo crowd.  A probable first in the states.

Conclusion

“The One” will go in the books as one of the biggest revenue generating fights in history.  This summary did not even cover the fact that Mayweather will receive a guaranteed $41 million without even factoring in the other revenue streams.  Canelo should receive at least $12 million not counting what he may earn from other revenue streams.

While we note how much will be made from this event, Mayweather Promotions, Golden Boy and Showtime did outlay a lot of money with the hope of scoring big…which it looks like it did.

The marketing and promotion for this fight was all over and despite a $75 price tag, we may see a PPV revenue record broken.  Will it exceed the number of buys of De La Hoya-Floyd (2.5 million)?  Its not clear, but it should be close.

Riddle’s retirement comments draw White’s ire

September 13, 2013

MMA Junkie reports on the inauspicious retirement of Matthew Riddle.  Fed up with the state of MMA, Riddle voiced his displeasure with Bellator and the UFC.

According to Riddle he has made an average of $50,000 a year with the UFC. He was released from the UFC due to failing multiple drug tests. An injury forced him out of his first Bellator fight and he received word from Bellator that he would not receive a fight the rest of this year.  Fed up with MMA promotions and with a family to support, Riddle decided to retire and find a job.

Via MMA Junkie:

“When Bellator bought out my contract they said, ‘We’re family, we take care of our own,’” Riddle said. “But then I crack a rib two weeks out from a fight and ask for an extension, like Joe Warren got, and I get told no. Then I ask if I can fight before the end of the year and I get told no on that. I’ve got three kids, man. When they bought me out of the Legacy contract, that was back in May. They kept me on the bench from May until September. I got hurt for September and now they say they can’t get me a fight until January or February. The bottom line is, I’ve got a wife and three kids. I’ve got bills I have to pay.”

With the UFC being talked about, it was inevitable that Dana White would respond.  White stated that Riddle made $162,000 a year from 2011 to 2013.  He indicated that the reason he is not in the UFC anymore was because of failing drug tests.  Riddle tested positive for marijuana in two of his last three fights.

Riddle’s last 5 UFC Fights

UFC on Fuel TV: Barao v. McDonald – no official salary released February 2013

UFC 154 – no official salary released November 17, 2012

UFC 149 – no official salary released $65,000 Sub of the Night bonus July 2012

UFC 143 $30,000 ($15K/$15k) – February 2012

UFC Fight Night – no official salary released $55,000 FOTN bonus – September 2011

Riddle went 4-1 in his last 5 UFC fights.  However, UFC 149 and UFC on Fuel TV: Barao v. McDonald were wins that were overturned due to failed drug tests.

Payout Perspective:

Riddle’s case is not out of the ordinary.  Many fighters have found the issues of waiting for a fight frustrating and with the latest news from Bellator seems to have been the last straw.  Of course in the article, Riddle did leave the possibility of returning to fighting in the future open.  Still, from Riddle’s perspective, the physical toll it has taken on him and the uncertainty of income may have been the determinative factors for a career change.  Riddle definitely contributed to his demise with failing drug tests which caused the UFC to cut him.  As White pointed out, most employers will drug test in the workplace.

The question as to how much Riddle made is an interesting one.  Riddles states he made $50,000 a year while White contends he made $162,000 a year while in the UFC.  Who you believe may be based on White’s comment that he pays fighters for three fights a year even if they do not have those fights (1:10 mark). Essentially, if White cannot book the fighter three fights in a year, he will still compensate the fighter.  This would be contrary to Riddle’s claim his salary was dependent on fighting. Only one official salary report is available from Riddle’s past five fights in the UFC which were from 2011 to 2013.  At UFC 143 in February 2012 he made $15K to show and additional $15K for the win. Riddle did receive a $65,000 Submission of the Night bonus ar UFC 149 (July 2012) and a $55,000 Fight of the Night bonus bonus for UFC Fight Night: Shields v. Ellenberger (September 2011).  Riddle was fined at UFC 149 for a failed drug test so its not clear whether he kept the $65K bonus.

But, based on White’s comments, it indicates that Riddle would have made an average of $54,000 per fight. $162,000 divided by 3 fights.  This would mean that Riddle received huge unreported locker room bonuses or was paid by other means (i.e. appearances).  If Riddle had a base of around $15K in 2012, that would mean he received big bonuses.  Then again, if he failed post-fight drug tests, its unlikely he would receive any extra money.

Its also interesting around the 3:00 mark White blasts MMA Junkie for not reporting “both sides of the story.”  This appears to be based on the fact that the web site did not state that Riddle was quoted in a podcast interview (around 30:00 mark) where he stated that marijuana probably keeps him from abusing his kids “because they’re always screaming and crying.”  Junkie does state that Riddle tested positive in two of his last three UFC fights.

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