PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — EARLY signs indicated the Manny Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto bout will surpass the 1 million mark in Pay-Per-View buys, readily making it boxing’s biggest hit for 2009.
Top Rank Promotions chairman Bob Arum said the final figures have yet to be released by HBO, but was already confident that it will make ‘over a million and under 1.5 million buys.’
“They’re not really accurate yet, but all that we can say with absolute certainty is that Pacquiao-Cotto was the biggest, revenue-producing event on pay-per-view for the entire year,” Arum announced.
“And that surpasses all of the UFC. Everything. Any event. It’s the biggest event of the year from the standpoint of revenue being generated.”
Going by his pronouncement, last week’s mega-fight for the World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight championship at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada, has now surpassed the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Juan Manuel Marquez fight last September, the leading pay-per-view show for the year.
The match serving as Mayweather’s ring comeback following a one-year retirement, earned one million buys in pay-per-view, exceeding the $850,000 generated by Pacquiao’s May 2 encounter with Briton Ricky Hatton.
Mark Taffet, senior vice-president of HBO pay-per-view, is set to release a statement over the matter this weekend when all of the numbers are totaled up.
“Based on what we have, we can make that statement — that Pacquiao-Cotto was the biggest revenue-generating pay-per-view event of the year,” said Arum, who promotes both fighters.
In terms of ticket sales, Pacquiao-Cotto already did better than Mayweather-Marquez, earning $8.84 million out of 15,470 tickets sold.
The numbers are 3,500 more tickets and $2 million more in earnings from the Mayweather-Marquez bout.
Pacquiao’s drawing power could be a major point in negotiations for a possible fight by the Filipino boxing icon and the unbeaten Mayweather in 2010.
Having scored the bigger pay-per-view buys, Pacquiao appears to have the leverage over Mayweather if and when terms of purse split will be discussed during the negotiations.