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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson

Money doesn’t motivate Manny

By Joaquin Henson
16 Nov 2016

Boxing coach Freddie Roach said recently that at this point in Manny Pacquiao’s career, it isn’t money that motivates him to continue to fight. In Roach’s view, Pacquiao is still in the fight game because he loves the sport, wants to give more pride to his country and does it for his fans to enjoy or make a living out of boxing.

“Manny spends for others before himself,” said Roach. “That’s how he is. Now that he’s in the Senate, his motivation is to help people. It’s a new challenge for him and he’s taking it seriously. From what I’ve been told, Manny’s doing a good job.”

For the Jessie Vargas bout in Las Vegas two weeks ago, Pacquiao was guaranteed a sum of $6 Million, a huge drop from the $20 Million minimum he took in the third Timothy Bradley fight last April. Pacquiao earned at least $20 Million in his last 10 fights before Vargas.

“We all took a pay cut,” said Roach. “But we love Manny. I’d work with him for free because I owe him a lot and he’s changed my life.” Pacquiao agreed to the low guarantee for the chance to regain the WBO welterweight crown and set up a possible rematch with Floyd Mayweather, Jr. down the road. Pacquiao reportedly paid $2 Million for tickets to the Vargas fight to give away to family, friends and fans and that’s not including what he coughed up for plane fares and hotel accommodations. So he probably broke even or lost some money in the final accounting.

Roach said an example of Pacquiao’s generosity was when he gave $400 as pocket money to a former Filipino world champion who put it in a bet on the rubber match against Erik Morales in 2006. The wager was for Pacquiao to score a knockout in the third round with a 16-to-1 payoff. “Manny wasn’t feeling well that night,” said Roach. “Of course, it was too late to cancel the fight but that wasn’t on Manny’s mind. He didn’t want to disappoint the fans and spoil the promotion. He told me we had to change the fight plan. Because he wasn’t feeling well, he wanted to go for an early knockout. He wouldn’t be able to go the distance in his condition. So he went out there and knocked out Morales in the third round. That man who bet $400 made a killing and walked away with $6,400.”

Forbes Magazine’s Kurt Badenhausen estimated Pacquiao’s ring earnings to be over $500 Million. In the third Bradley fight, his contract purse was $7 Million but he was paid a total of $20 Million as Top Rank’s guarantee. Pay-per-view buys reached 400,000 which was the same figure for Mayweather’s farewell fight against Andre Berto last year.

In 20 pay-per-view fights before Vargas, Pacquiao generated over 18.7 million buys and revenues of over $1.2 Billion. He figured in seven bouts that pulled in at least a million pay-per-view hits----1.25 million against Oscar de la Hoya in 2008, 1.25 million against Miguel Cotto in 2009, 1.15 million against Antonio Margarito in 2010, 1.34 million against Sugar Shane Mosley in 2011, 1.4 million against Juan Manuel Marquez in 2011, 1.15 million against Marquez in their fourth fight in 2012 and 4.6 million against Mayweather in 2015.

Pacquiao’s lowest pay-per-view draw of 206,000 was posted in the fight against David Diaz in 2008. The biggest was the record he made with Mayweather in a fight that racked up total revenues of about $600 Million. Pacquiao reportedly bankrolled $120 Million and Mayweather, at least $240 Million.

For the Vargas fight, Top Rank produced the pay-per-view show independently and did away with the 7.5 percent fee from net sales which otherwise would’ve gone to the carrying network. Vargas was guaranteed $2.8 Million. No pay-per-view figures have been released but the expectation is sales would at least match what the third Bradley bout made.

Pacquiao’s average pay-per-view hits is 933,300 compared to Mayweather’s 1.3 million. Mayweather has seven fights with at least a million buys just like Pacquiao but did it in five less pay-per-view events. Mayweather is the only fighter in history to register three fights with at least two million hits----2.4 million against De la Hoya in 2007, 2.2 million against Canelo Alvarez in 2013 and 4.6 million against Pacquiao last year. His lowest number was 325,000 for the Carlos Baldomir fight in 2007. From 2009 to 2013, Mayweather had six straight fights with at least a million pay-per-view sales.

If Pacquiao has two more fights left before calling it quits, the most marketable opponents would be Marquez and Mayweather. His motivation will be to exact payback because he’s coming off losses to both. Besides, the last two Pacquiao-Marquez fights went over a million pay-per-view buys and the record set by the Pacquiao-Mayweather bout isn’t likely to ever be surpassed. So fighting Marquez first then Mayweather in a farewell outing would make business sense, too.

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