Mayweather vs Pacquiao

By Kory Walker
Published on April 28, 2015
Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao

It’s been over five years since Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao were originally due to meet in the boxing ring. A fight was scheduled for March of 2010, but negotiations between the two camps broke down and it never went ahead. The possibility of these two boxers going head to head has been discussed ever since, and it has finally become a reality.

This Saturday, May 2nd, will see Mayweather and Pacquiao take part in what has been billed “The Fight of the Century”. It’s been a long time coming for boxing fans, but it’s almost certain to be worth the wait. The fight will take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, and will be watched by millions all over the world.

In this post I’m going to preview the fight, take a look at the betting markets, and make my predictions on the likely outcome.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: The Money

I can’t talk about this fight without first touching on the subject of money. This is going to be the richest boxing match in history, by quite some margin, and some of the sums of money involved are quite simply eye-watering. Here are some of the figures being talked about.

Purse: $300 million

The reported purse for Saturday’s fight is a staggering $300 million. It is believed that it will be split 60/40 in Mayweather’s favor, meaning a payday for him of $180 million. Pacquiao will earn less, at $120 million, but it’s hard to imagine he’ll be too disappointed with his cut! It’s still over $3 million PER MINUTE, assuming the fight goes the distance.

By way of comparison, Pacquiao’s last fight earned him $23 million and Mayweather’s previous fight earned him $32 million.

Gate: $72 million

The live gate for the fight is expected to be in excess of $70 million. This will shatter the previous record for a boxing match, which stood at around $20 million from when Mayweather fought Alvarez in 2013.

Tickets:  $1,500 – $7,500

The MGM Grand Garden Arena has a capacity of over 16,000, but only between 500 and 1,000 tickets were sold to the general public. The rest were presumably reserved for sponsors, celebrities and other VIPs. The lowest priced tickets on general sale were available at $1,500 and the most expensive tickets went for $7,500. They were all sold out within 60 seconds.

There have been reports of several tickets appearing for sale at online ticket resellers. The most expensive I’ve heard of to date were a pair of ringside tickets on StubHub, going for a mere $360,000 for the two.

Sponsorships: $13 million+

Sponsorship for the fight is believed to total over $13 million, approximately three times the previous record for a boxing match. Tecate, the Mexican brewing company, has paid $5.6 million alone to become the official beer supplier and main ring mat sponsor. They beat a bid from Corona of $5.2 million, as companies from all over the world looked to have their name associated with this sporting spectacle.

Pay Per View: $250 million +

The PPV sales for Mayweather vs Pacquiao are expected to top $250 million. It’s going to be joint telecast from Showtime and HBO (a rare occurrence), with record prices. The cost of watching the fight in high definition will be $99, which is over $20 higher than the previous record, and it’s $89 for standard definition.

The Belt: $1 million

The belt won by winner of the fight will be a special creation from the WBC. It’s a replica of the current belt, but with thousands of emeralds replacing the gold plating for the center logo. The belt is valued at a cool $1 million.

Vegas Economy: $1 billion +

The overall boost to the Las Vegas economy this weekend is forecast to be in the region of one billion dollars, with over 300,000 expected to visit the city. Hotel prices are inflated as a result, and it’s going to cost at least $1,000 to spend the night anywhere on the strip. There will be limited options for watching the fight on TV too, as only MGM owned locations have the right to screen it. Entry to such venues is likely to cost around $150 minimum.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: The Boxers

Mayweather and Pacquiao both started their careers relatively quietly, but they are now rightly considered two of the most accomplished boxers of their time. These are currently the two best pound for pound fighters around. Let’s take a look at some of the key facts about them.

Floyd Mayweather Jr

  • Born: Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
  • Age: 38
  • Turned Professional: 1996
  • Record: Won 47, Lost 0, 26 Knockouts
  • Height: 5 feet, 8 inches (1.73 meters)
  • Weight: 147 pounds (67 kilograms)
  • Reach: 72 inches (183 centimeters)
  • Stance: Orthodox
  • Career Earnings: $420 million
  • Nicknames: Pretty Boy, Money, The Best Ever

Manny Pacquiao

  • Born: Kibawe, Bukidnon, Philippines
  • Age: 36
  • Turned Professional: 1995
  • Record: Won 57, Lost 5, Drawn 2, 38 Knockouts
  • Height: 5 feet, 6 inches (1.69 meters)
  • Weight: 147 pounds (67 kilograms)
  • Reach: 67 inches (170 centimeters)
  • Stance: Southpaw
  • Career Earnings: $335 million
  • Nicknames: Pac-Man, The Mexicutioner, Pambansang Ninong

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: Fight Preview

Mayweather is the odds on favorite in this bout, and rightly so. He’s coming into it off the back of 47 straight wins over a professional career stretching nearly 20 years, and his record includes victories against some talented fighters. That’s not to say it’s going to be an easy 48th victory for him though – far from it in fact. It’s widely expected that this is going to be the toughest fight of his career.

His opponent, Pacquiao, can boast an impressive record of his own. He has been defeated – five times – but he has more fights to his name, and more knockouts too. There are plenty of people in boxing that believe he has every chance of bringing an end to Mayweather’s unbeaten record.

Mayweather is 38 years old, and it’s reasonable to assume that his very best years are behind him. With that being said, he’s shown very little to suggest that he’s in any kind of decline. He doesn’t have quite the same mobility as he used to, but he is still fantastic defensively. His opponents have always found him hard to hit, even when getting up close.

This opponent, however, will be confident of landing a few punches. Pacquiao is not quite the fast and furious fighter that he used to be, but he still has impressive hand speed. He throws punches from all different angles, and in quick combinations. Against an opponent like Pacquiao, Mayweather’s tried and trusted strategy of relying on his shoulder-roll defense and head movement is not guaranteed to stand up as well as it has in the past.

Pacquiao also possesses incredible energy and stamina, and you can expect him to still be throwing combination after combination in later rounds. Mayweather, on the other hand, is not famed for his combination punching, tending to rely on his accuracy instead. His punches generally count when he throws them too, and he does have the advantage in height and reach.

A big question mark for Pacquiao is whether his punches will actually do enough damage to his opponent. It’s been a long time since he won a fight by stoppage, and he’s up against one of the strongest chins he’ll have ever faced. He’ll have to be at his very best at landing power shots if he’s going to have any hope of knocking Mayweather down.

Overall, there can be little doubt that Pacquiao has assets that could cause Mayweather some problems. He is also going to be extremely motivated, and he does have an impressive will to win. Mayweather is tough and durable though, and he won’t exactly be lacking in motivation himself.

This fight is as big as it comes, and both fighters will be doing everything they can to claim victory. Pacquiao will almost certainly give an excellent account of himself, and run his opponent close. In the end though, Mayweather will probably prove just too hard to beat.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: The Betting

There are several betting markets open on this fight, and you may have to look beyond simply picking the winner if you want to find some value. Here are the odds if you’re interested though.

Selection Decimal Odds Moneyline Odds Fractional Odds
Mayweather to Win 1.44 -225 4/9
Pacquiao to Win 3.00 +200 2/1

The draw is also available at 17.00 (16/1, +1600)

The method of victory market looks a little more appealing, with the following odds available.

Selection Decimal Odds Moneyline Odds Fractional Odds
Mayweather by Decision or Technical Decision 1.67 -150 4/6
Mayweather by KO, TKO, or Disqualification 7.00 +600 6/1
Pacquiao by Decision or Technical Decision 4.50 +350 7/2
Pacquiao by KO, TKO, or Disqualification 6.50 +550 11/2

As you can see, Mayweather to win by decision is the clear favorite. Interestingly, though, the odds suggest that Pacquiao is marginally the more likely of the two to win by knockout or technical knockout.

You can also bet on whether or not the fight goes the distance.

Selection Decimal Odds Moneyline Odds Fractional Odds
Fight Goes the Distance 1.30 -333 3/10
Fight Doesn’t Go The Distance 3.40 +240 12/5

Clearly the general consensus is that the fight is far more likely to go the distance than not, which is a reasonable assessment. If you think there will be a winner during rounds one to twelve, however, you might want to consider the round betting markets.

Selection Decimal Odds Moneyline Odds Fractional Odds
Mayweather in Rd 1 81.00 +8000 80/1
Mayweather in Rd 2 67.00 +6600 66/1
Mayweather in Rd 3 51.00 +5000 50/1
Mayweather in Rd 4 51.00 +5000 50/1
Mayweather in Rd 5 41.00 +4000 40/1
Mayweather in Rd 6 41.00 +4000 40/1
Mayweather in Rd 7 34.00 +3300 33/1
Mayweather in Rd 8 34.00 +3300 33/1
Mayweather in Rd 9 41.00 +4000 40/1
Mayweather in Rd 10 41.00 +4000 40/1
Mayweather in Rd 11 41.00 +4000 40/1
Mayweather in Rd 12 51.00 +5000 50/1
Pacquiao in Rd 1 81.00 +8000 80/1
Pacquiao in Rd 2 51.00 +5000 50/1
Pacquiao in Rd 3 51.00 +5000 50/1
Pacquiao in Rd 4 51.00 +5000 50/1
Pacquiao in Rd 5 41.00 +4000 40/1
Pacquiao in Rd 6 41.00 +4000 40/1
Pacquiao in Rd 7 41.00 +4000 40/1
Pacquiao in Rd 8 34.00 +3300 33/1
Pacquiao in Rd 9 34.00 +3300 33/1
Pacquiao in Rd 10 34.00 +3300 33/1
Pacquiao in Rd 11 41.00 +4000 40/1
Pacquiao in Rd 12 67.00 +6600 66/1

It’s very hard to predict an exact round in any fight, and definitely in this one. An alternative is to look at the round group betting markets.

Selection Decimal Odds Moneyline Odds Fractional Odds
Mayweather in Rds 1-3 29.00 +2800 28/1
Mayweather in Rds 4-6 21.00 +2000 20/1
Mayweather in Rds 7-9 17.00 +1600 16/1
Mayweather in Rds 10-12 21.00 +2000 20/1
Pacquiao in Rds 1-3 23.00 +2200 22/1
Pacquiao in Rds 4-6 19.00 +1800 18/1
Pacquiao in Rds 7-9 15.00 +1400 14/1
Pacquiao in Rds 10-12 19.00 +1800 18/1

Please note that all the odds here are accurate as of April 28th. They could change between now and the fight, but I wouldn’t expect much movement at all. I took these odds from the UK bookmaker Coral, which is my recommended place to bet on this fight. If you live the United States, you should use Bovada.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao: Predictions & Betting Advice

It’s hard to imagine that this fight will be anything other than a very close one. I won’t be staking big bucks on it, simply because I think it’s simply too hard to call with any degree of confidence. Even though I can’t really see Mayweather getting beaten, it’s difficult to absolutely rule out Manny. He’s been waiting for this fight for a long time, and his sheer determination could play a factor.

As such, the odds of 1.44 for Mayweather just aren’t big enough to tempt me. The odds on the fight going the distance (1.30) are also a bit too skinny for my liking. Again I think it’s the most likely outcome, but there’s a distinct lack of value here.

A bet on Mayweather to win by decision at 1.67 doesn’t exactly scream value either, but it’s probably the right bet to make in my view. I’m also going to place a small wager on Mayweather to win in round 10-12, at 21.00. This is a bit of a long shot, but with some reasoning behind it. I think there’s a chance Pacquiao will know he’s behind on the score cards by that stage of the fight, and he may start taking some risks. That could well play into Mayweather’s hands, so at the odds available I like the bet.

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