We all knew the interest levels in the Mike Tyson Vs. Roy Jones exhibition bout were high, but we never really thought they would prove to be 1.2 million pay-per-view buys high. But according to a tweet from Dan Rafael, last Saturday night’s eight round exhibition bout managed to pull in over 1 million P-P-V buys, with Rafael writing how the number is likely closer to 1.2 million.
“I was told today by sources well over 1 million in the U.S – probably in the 1.2 neighbourhood, which would include traditional linear PPV, the @Fite TV digital app and Direc TV/Dish Network. A shockingly high number that will make the biggest selling # boxing PPV in quite a while,” Rafael wrote.
This makes the fight, not a real fight but merely an exhibition, the most successful boxing pay-per-view fight of this year. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? On the one hand, the interest Tyson and Jones brought to the sport is a good thing, with people everywhere talking about boxing. On the other hand, it’s quite depressing how two past their prime former champions are capable of attracting more fans than any of the current stars. By comparison, the Tyson Fury-Deontay Wilder rematch from February drew 850,000 pay-per-view buys; this itself a huge success.
But it’s little wonder there is talk of further exhibition bouts featuring big names from the past – with the likes of Evander Holyfield, Lennox Lewis, Shannon Briggs, Riddick Bowe and Glenn McCrory all wanting to get in on the act. Even Buster Douglas replied when he was asked about it, that he’d be “open” to a rematch with Tyson. Where will it end? Well, in light of how much dough the old champs are clearly more than capable of generating, the senior’s tour of exhibition bouts might not come to an end any time soon.
Tyson himself has said he hopes to do more, maybe taking his show to Europe. Who knows how much fan interest/P-P-V buys Tyson’s next exhibition bout will generate?