WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley (31-0, 12 KO’s) is reportedly asking for $10 million for his rematch against Manny Pacquiao (55-5-2, 38 KO’s) on April 12th, according to Mydesert.com. If this really true then it makes a lot of sense why the Pacquiao-Bradley fight isn’t a done deal.
$10 million for a fighter like Bradley is an incredible amount given that he’s not proven himself to be a a huge star in the sport. That kind of money goes to guys like Saul “Canelo” Alavarez and Miguel Cotto. In other words, fighters who have proven that they can bring in massive amounts of fans for their fights. I don’t know that Bradley is capable of attracting huge audiences when not matched against guys like Pacquiao or Juan Manuel Marquez. He’s someone that needs help to bring in fans.
You can actually make a good argument that Bradley weighted Pacquiao down for their fight in 2012, because their fight brought in less than 900,000 PPV buys. Before that fight, Pacquiao had enjoyed three straight 1 million+ PPV fights against Antonio Margarito, Shane Mosley and Juan Manuel Marquez. The Bradley fight saw a drop in PPV numbers, although not quite as bad as Pacquiao’s fight against Joshua Clottey back in 2010. It was still bad enough to cause a lot of grumbling afterwards when the PPV numbers for the Pacquiao-Bradley fight were released.
Bradley received a guaranteed of $5 million for his fight with Pacquiao in 2012, plus an upside from the PPV. He might have ended up making close to $10 million after the PPV money came in. But I’m not sure that the Pacquiao-Bradley rematch will bring in even 800,000 PPV buys. That’s asking a lot from fans to want to watch Pacquiao and Bradley fight a second time. I see this as a fight that many fans will wait to see it a week after for free on HBO in a rerun than paying $60-70 to watch it live. Pacquiao’s last fight against Brandon Rios brought in only 475,000 PPV buys from last November. I see the Bradley-Pacquiao II fight bringing in about the same. The question is can Top Rank pay Pacquiao $20 million+ and Bradley $10 million for a fight only brings in 500,000 PPV buys? I seriously doubt it.
Pacquiao needs to fight someone like Yuriorkis Gamboa or Mikey Garcia next rather than Bradley or Ruslan Provodnikov. If Arum thinks that boxing fans are just dying to see Pacquiao fight Bradley again or Provodnikov, he’s going to be a sad promoter after the PPV numbers come in. I think Arum needs to put in some new blood and look in another direction from Bradley or Provodnikov. Arum can do much better than this, and it won’t cost him a king’s ransom to get Gamboa or Garcia.