While no projected numbers for next weekend’s Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. Andre Berto fight in Las Vegas have yet been made public, interest would appear to be running low and even Mayweather — never shy about publicizing his own achievements — has been tight-lipped about the dollar figures the Berto fight may produce.
“All I can do is just hope we do good numbers,” Mayweather said in recent comments reported by the boxing news site Boxing Scene. “That’s the only thing I can do. I can’t say no particular number, but we’ll just have to see. Nobody’s forced to watch. Watch if you want to watch. If you don’t want to watch, don’t watch.”
But Mayweather’s opponent in the September 12 bout believes he knows why the fight has failed to generate much buzz in the boxing world — and it has nothing to do with the fact that he, Andre Berto, has lost three of his last six fights, including two to opponents that Mayweather has defeated in one-sided fashion.
According to Berto, the apparent lack of enthusiasm for the fight is the fault of — Manny Pacquiao.
Mayweather’s unanimous decision May 2 victory over Pacquiao in what proved to be the biggest moneymaking fight of all time was widely derided as “boring.”
“I just feel like that Mayweather-Pacquiao fight left a bad taste in a lot of peoples’ mouths and it transcended over to this side,” Berto said in recent comments during a promotional interview for the fight.
“They’ve never seen a boring Andre Berto fight. There is definitely going to be something for them to tune into. At the end of the day he is 38-years old and he’s going to have a young, powerful bull on his ass,” the 31-year-old, 10-year veteran promised.
Pacquiao later claimed that he was not able to produce the action fight that he intended to a previously undisclosed shoulder injury — and injury that now, just four months later, has miraculously healed, according to Pacquiao who attributes his speedy recovery to “God’s work.”
Berto, on the other hand, has indeed been known as an action fighter, but whether he will have any greater success in penetrating Mayweather’s stifling defense than did Pacquiao, or other heavy-hitting opponents such as Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley, or Marcos Maidana, appears unlikely.
While the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight cost $100 to purchase the pay-per-view broadcast and generated approximately 4.4 million “buys.” The Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. Andre Berto fight, to be broadcast by Showtime pay-per-view, will cost a full 25 percent less — $75. But Mayweather in his contract is reportedly guaranteed a payout of $32 million, even if the fight performs poorly in the marketplace.
[Image: Stephen Dunn / Getty Images]