NEW YORK – Almost 16 years have passed since Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather produced one of the most financially successful events in boxing history.
Their 154-pound title fight generated approximately $136 million in revenue from an estimated 2.45 million pay-per-view buys and over $19 million in ticket sales. All of those figures were records at that time.
De La Hoya, whose company promotes Ryan Garcia, predicted that his fighter and Gervonta Davis, who was promoted by Mayweather’s company for most of his career, can surpass the number of pay-per-view buys he and Mayweather produced in May 2007. Davis, 28, and Garcia, 24, are scheduled to fight in a Showtime Pay-Per-View main event April 22 at T-Mobile Arena, just across Las Vegas Boulevard from MGM Grand Garden Arena, where Mayweather defeated De La Hoya by split decision to win the WBC super welterweight title.
Industry insiders expect Davis-Garcia to be the most profitable pay-per-view show in the United States during at least the first half of 2023. De La Hoya has a great grasp of pay-per-view history, but even he admitted that skeptics have called him “crazy” for suggesting Davis-Garcia will exceed two million buys, let alone 2.45 million.
“I truly feel in terms of numbers and business, I really do feel this is like Mayweather-De La Hoya,” De La Hoya told a group of reporters following a press conference Wednesday at Palladium Times Square. “I believe it can do – you know, people called me crazy when I said it can do two million homes – I believe it can break 2.4 million homes that me and Mayweather did. It’s that big of a fight.
“Come to think of it, I believe Tank and Ryan, or maybe Tank, is bigger than Mayweather [was] when he fought me, with world titles and he [has] popularity and Instagram followers, and this and that. So, we’re in a different world. We’re in a different, you know, time and, you know, these kids are the very best. And the fact that they’re fighting each other, it creates the perfect storm.”
Mayweather’s victory over De La Hoya, for which Mayweather earned a reported $25 million, launched him toward superstardom. De La Hoya reportedly earned $52 million from his fight with Mayweather.
Mayweather, five-division champion who retired undefeated, eventually became the highest-paid boxer in the history of the sport, thanks in part to his extremely lucrative fight against Manny Pacquiao in May 2015.
De La Hoya, a 1992 Olympic gold medalist and six-division champion, was boxing’s biggest non-heavyweight pay-per-view star before Mayweather made enormous sums of money later in his Hall-of-Fame career.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.
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