Floyd Mayweather puts his legacy and undefeated record on the line Saturday night when he steps into the ring against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Mayweather will receive a record guarantee of $41.5 million (Canelo is due $5 million) and is in line for a total payout millions more after all of the pay-per-view receipts are counted and “Money” Mayweather takes his cut. In a 17-year career full of monster paydays, it will be the biggest one yet, topping the $45 million, including his share of PPV revenue, for fighting Miguel Cotto in 2012. Mayweather’s cumulative career earnings will likely hit $350 million with the Canelo fight.
The huge payday is a relatively new thing in the career of Mayweather. He turned pro in 1996 after winning a bronze medal at Atlanta Summer Olympics and piled up 17 victories before getting a title shot in 1998 against Genaro Hernandez. Mayweather received $150,000 for the fight, which he won by technical knockout when Hernandez did not answer the bell for the ninth round. Mayweather’s purse guarantees did not hit seven figures for another seven fights when he defeated Diego Corrales in 2001.
Mayweather’s earnings stayed in the $2-3 million range per bout over his next nine fights. Towards the end of that stretch, he had his first PPV fight against Arturo Gatti in 2005. His earnings jumped in 2006 when he fought Zab Judah and Carlos Baldomir in a pair of fights that drew a combined PPV audience of 700,000 and netted Mayweather roughly $13 million for the year and ran his record to 37-0. The year also marked Mayweather’s split from Top Rank and its chief Bob Arum. Mayweather’s earnings were limited as a fighter in the Top Rank stable and he would eventually start his own promotion company, Mayweather Promotions, to control the revenue streams of his fights. The transformation from “Pretty Boy” to “Money” had begun.
Mayweather’s earnings soared starting in 2007 with his first eight-figure payday. His showdown with Oscar De La Hoya set the record for PPV buys with 2.44 million, which resulted in $132 million in PPV revenue. It is a mark that is potentially under assault Saturday night. Richard Schaefer, head of Golden Boy, which is co-promoting Saturday’s bout thinks the fight is on target to top the PPV revenue record thanks to the increased cost with the high-def telecast. Schaefer sees an outside shot at the PPV buy mark and says, “I have 2.6 million [PPV buys] in my mind. Records are meant to be broken.”
The 2007 mega-fight earned De La Hoya $52 million, and Mayweather eventually netted about $25 million after all of the PPV receipts were counted. It started a run of eight straight fights where Mayweather earned at least $25 million. The vanquished include: Ricky Hatton and Juan Manuel Marquez (both $25 million for Mayweather); Shane Mosley and Victor Ortiz ($40 million each); Cotto ($45 million) and Guerrero ($34 million). Alvarez is the latest to try and take down Mayweather.
Mayweather’s take from the Canelo fight will ultimately be based on the final PPV count. Mayweather Promotions chief Leonard Ellerbe thinks Mayweather could rake in as much as $100 million from the fight, which would likely require at least three million buys. It’s an optimistic tally, but if Mayweather nets $70 million from the fight, it will push his career earnings to $350 million.
Mayweather is far from done making money with this fight. He has four fights remaining after Canelo on the six-fight deal he signed with Showtime in February. Mayweather is likely looking at more than $150 million from those bouts which would make him the half-a-billion dollar man.
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Tags: floyd mayweather career earnings to hit $350 million with canelo fight
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