Mayweather-Khan PPV numbers likely to be underwhelming
While Floyd Mayweather Jr. still hasn’t officially named his next opponent for his May 3rd fight date, it’s widely expected to be Britain’s Amir Khan who will be pitted against him. It’s no secret that Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer and Showtime’s President of Sports Stephen Espinoza see his fight as an intriguing on due to the the blazing fast hand speed of Mayweather and Khan.
It’s a win-win fight for Golden Boy because they promote Khan, and just by fighting Mayweather it’ll increase Khan’s value to their stable. However, this fight might not turn out so well for Mayweather due to what will likely be a poor pay-per-view numbers.
Mayweather and Golden Boy are probably gambling that Mayweather’s name alone will make up for the fact that Khan is a complete unknown among casual boxing fans in the U.S, but the reality is Mayweather will be lucky to attract as many PPV buys as his fight with Robert Guerrero in May of last year. That was one of Mayweather’s poorer PPV bouts in recent memory, and it was clear that he had counted on the Hispanic community in the U.S getting behind Guerrero in this fight.
It didn’t happen like he thought it would, which isn’t that surprising because Guerrero didn’t have have the resume or the star-like status to interest a lot of fans in the fight. Combine that with the bland press conferences and the Showtime Top Access episodes in which Guerrero’s father Ruben was arguably a heck a lot more interesting to watch than Robert was.
It’s no skin of Golden Boy’s teeth if the Khan-Mayweather fight brings in dreadful PPV numbers, because it’ll do well enough to likely make them happy. And like I said, the Mayweather fight will increase Khan’s popularity and value to Golden Boy, as long as he doesn’t get beaten too badly by Mayweather and turned into a Victor Ortiz where he’s clowned and stopped.
If Mayweather’s PPV numbers drop to a career low by him fighting Khan, it might put Mayweather in a position where he might have to do the unthinkable and that’s agree to fight Manny Pacquiao in an effort to boost his PPV numbers for his September fight on Showtime. Mayweather has 4 fights left on his 6-fight contract with Showtime/CBS, and you can bet they won’t be happy seeing his PPV numbers tank in a fight against Khan, even though they appear to be pleased with Khan as his next opponent. That’s the only thing good that can come out of the Mayweather-Khan fight. If it does badly as many people thing it will, Mayweather will be in the position where he’ll need to finally agree to fight Pacquiao in order to get his PPV numbers back to where they were for his Saul “Canelo” Alvarez fight last September. Fighting Pacquiao will definitely do that.
It’s going to be really tough for Golden Boy and Mayweather to ask boxing fans to pay $70 to see him fight Khan, a fighter with a 2-2 record in his last 4 fights. How do you sell a fight between Mayweather a guy with a record like that? That’s a fight that should really be on regular Showtime and not PPV. Putting it on PPV just seems like a money grab and little more.