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The over/under on PPV buys for Mayweather-McGregor is 5 million. Take the under – barely

By Zach Arnold | June 15, 2017

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Will Jason Whitlock’s prediction of Conor McGregor-Floyd Mayweather devolving in a race war surpassing the rhetoric in the Quinton Jackson-Rashad Evans feud come true? Probably so, but the raw ugliness will not stop hundreds of millions of people from watching a $100 USD PPV.

The media’s expectations are not lining up with fan expectations. Before McGregor-Mayweather was signed, there were hypothetical odds of Conor being a 22-to-1 underdog. So far, the gambling lines have kept McGregor at an astounding 8-to-1 underdog price. Giving McGregor over a 10% chance to win sounds insane but there is definitely fan demand to bet some cash on McGregor. Hey, people play the lottery every day. It can’t be any worse of a sucker’s bet.

This is exactly the dream scenario that new UFC ownership WME-IMG imagined. They have been horribly distracted for the past six months in getting this fight booked. Conor McGregor dragged them along but management came to the conclusion that, given their massive debt in financing the purchase of UFC, they needed a financial homerun to dig out of the hole they found themselves in. Everyone is going to get paid. Mayweather is making 9-figures. McGregor no doubt is making mid-8 figures, perhaps higher. UFC is going to make tens of millions of dollars.

The level of incredulousness on display from the mainstream American sports media to the fan demand for the Mayweather-McGregor fight is the perfect display of cognitive dissonance in the fight industry. It’s a gross spectacle absolutely deserving of raw cynicism. The right people are disavowing this charade. The problem with dismissing this as a circus is that you can’t say the fight is going to ruin combat sports if the actual result doesn’t amount to a hill of a beans.

It’s not all roses for UFC

For the next two months, there is one major fight on the mind of fight fans. It’s Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather. It’s going to suck all the oxygen away from the rest of UFC’s upcoming schedule. It will even make a (minor) dent in the upcoming Anaheim fight with Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier.

There’s no doubt that the circus fight will take away oxygen from Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez. Do they keep the September 16th date? It’s hard to imagine rescheduling that fight for a later date given that NFL & College Football season is going to take away the spotlight. The decision by Golden Boy to choose what appeared to be the safer pick in Las Vegas over Jerry World in Dallas looks like a mistake in hindsight. That doesn’t mean the enthusiasm for the GGG fight has dampened at all. The question is whether or not the fans who will planning on buying that fight are going to get suckered into blowing their money on the spectacle fight three weeks before.

Remember, Oscar De La Hoya channeled his inner Trump and claimed the GGG fight with Canelo Alvarez would sell 3 million PPV buys. Now we have a circus fight which Vegas is taking prop bets on with an over/under of 5 million PPV buys.

UFC reportedly was pursuing a Seattle date (Key Arena) for August 19th. Running a UFC PPV a week before the Showtime PPV with Mayweather-McGregor is a bad idea. They may have no choice, however. They sure as hell can’t book another joke of an interim title fight as a headliner, either.

Topics: Boxing, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 4 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

4 Responses to “The over/under on PPV buys for Mayweather-McGregor is 5 million. Take the under – barely”

  1. JV1 says:

    The power of the casual fan and the curious spectator channeled through both mainstream & social media will make this fight rival that of May/Pac in PPV numbers–at the very least. Even if hardcore fans in both boxing and MMA boycott the circus it will not make a dent, too few in numbers (They will surely tune in for what is the legitimate contest in Canelo/GGG)

  2. JV1 says:

    You can bet the winner of GGG/Canelo will call out Mayweather. But if by the luck of the Irish McGregor lands a lucky punch, then there will be an immediate rematch in the near future, so expect the Circus Part Deux and a build up of a year or so as McGregor demands insane amounts of money. He ain’t going back to the UFC win or lose, unless they UP the pay substantially.

  3. Chris says:

    So a 100.00 Price tag for a May-Pac fight that stunk. A 100.00 price tag for a glorified sparring session that’s going to be worse. People do realize that fight will be up on the Internet in about two hours after the final bell right? But who am I to tell people what they should be wasting their money on.

    Golden Boy had no idea this would happen. But they just paid the price for dragging out the Canelo-GGG negotiations over the last year.

    The sparring session will only be interesting if McGregor hits Mayweather with a punch he doesn’t like. Then he will spend the remainder of this sparring session hitting McGregor at will until the final bell.

    Hi Zach!

  4. Diaz's packed bowl says:

    Ill bet that 100 on the Mc Gregor ko, its a good payout. And drop another 100 on mayweather by decision just in case Mc cant get it done in 12 rounds.
    It all depends on the intelligence of his corner, they should be able to figure out a way to land over the course of 12 rounds.


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