By Andrew E.K Maina
On the 28th of August 2017, Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather took on first-time pro boxer and longtime Mixed Martial Arts combatant Connor McGregor in a one off non-title match in Las Vegas USA. Mayweather defeated McGregor in the 10th rounds to extend his unbeaten record to 50-0. In essence, this was boxing’s equivalent of an off season friendly match.
In spite of this the match, likely generated $300 million for Mayweather alone, with his minimum purse standing at $100 million as per the BBC. Connor McGregor, on the other hand, is guaranteed a minimum of $30 million. The earnings of the other boxers whose fights were also on the card that night were in the order of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Never mind most were actually contesting major boxing titles.
According to the Daily Mirror, even discounting his final fight, Mayweather has featured in the three richest boxing matches, with his final title defence against Manny Pacquiao generating $410 million in total revenue. Mayweather took home 180 of the 300 million dollars set aside for the boxers. The other fights in the Mirror’s top five featured ‘Iron’, Mike Tyson.
Outside of Mayweather the world of boxing is struggling to find a superstar personality who can draw the attention, infamy and therefore financial backing that Mayweather’s star power came with. Forbes list of Top 10 Pound-For-Pound Moneymakers in boxing may contain very wealthy fighters, but the figures they generate simply pale in comparison to what Mayweather pulls in. This is the reality boxing must address.