It’s been billed as the fight of the century, but there are early signs that Mayweather vs. Pacquiao may not be the money maker investors were hoping.
In the days just after the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight was announced, sports journalists and promoters dreamed big. The cheapest ticket for the epic fight was slated to sell for a face value of $1,500. The most expensive ticket would run $7,500. In total, the gate from Mayweather vs. Pacquiao was pegged at $74 million. That beats the previous record, also held by a Mayweather fight, by more than $50 million.
However, the gate only represents a fraction of the investment tied to Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. According to Bloomberg, the MGM Grand seats 16,800 people, but only 500 tickets were made available to the public. Those 500 tickets were almost immediately scooped up by resellers. One of those resellers, SeatGeek, had tickets for an average of $9,000 earlier this week. Tickets at Tiqiq, which once hovered around a high of $47,000, are now listed at a slightly more reasonable $11,000.
According to TMZ, some brokers are worried about recouping their investment. One company told TMZ that they acquired 60 tickets to Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, but have only managed to sell 20.
What caused such a hot commodity to crash so hard? The answer is complicated, but it may boil down to greed, power, and bad timing.
Mayweather vs. Pacquiao was met with much excitement when it was announced earlier this year. It was variously billed as the fight of the century, boxing’s last hope, and the hottest ticket in town, but real tickets for Mayweather vs. Pacquiao didn’t appear at all until less than a month before the fight.
Pacquiao’s camp blamed the delay in ticket availability on Mayweather. According to Michael Koncz, Pacquiao’s manager, Mayweather negotiated the how the two boxers would split the gate with the host venue, the MGM Grand, but never signed the agreement. Without Mayweather’s okay, the tickets couldn’t be sold. In the absence of actual sales, speculation drove the resale market higher.
When asked what might have motivated Mayweather to drag his feet, Koncz wasn’t kind.
“I can only surmise the motivation is greed and an attempt to manipulate the tickets, otherwise why the holdup? I’m more than a little upset they’re not for sale to the public.”
There’s nothing to suggest that Mayweather gained anything more from the negotiations, but his delay, if that was, in fact, the cause, may have directly led to the crash in ticket prices, because it has left resellers with too little time to unload the tickets they purchased.
[Image via Bing]