As you are likely aware of by now, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao have agreed to face off on May 2nd in Las Vegas.
The fight will be a cross-promotional push between HBO and Showtime — televised by both Pay-Per-View outlets at a suggested fee of $99.99 HD/$89.99 SD. No official announcement about pricing or international broadcasting has come about as of yet, and little is known beyond the barebones of the announcement. That may be just fine.
After six years of limbo in what were quite clearly ill-favored negotiations, most are astonished to even see the fight land on this Cinco De Mayo weekend. A couple of public and private meetings offered hints that the fight could be on the horizon, but no strong indicators came about as, with each progress, it would seem a standstill was soon to follow.
Television networks, specifically, struggled to come to terms on what will be the first co-PPV broadcast between HBO and Showtime dating back to the 2002 clash between faded Heavyweights Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson. Representatives from the networks report that an official broadcasting crew is not yet decided, but an “all-star” line-up of commentators from both networks will join together to call this show.
The focus won’t be on that, however. This Pay-Per-View is projected to draw record-shattering numbers — topping the likes of Mayweather-Canelo (2.2 million buys, est.), Mayweather-De La Hoya (2.5 million buys, est.) by a relative landslide. The chaos surrounding the fight is expected to be no less outstanding, with a festal slate of events expected in the days leading up to the bout, as well as a media tour likely to kick off within the next six weeks.
With that, it becomes quite clear that Mayweather Vs. Pacquiao represents something massive to boxing — an event that will once again interconnect it to the mainstream sporting world.
A night of boxing — if one fight — big enough to exude the glory days of boxing. Back when the heavyweight fight was the talk of the town, and the champion was the man of his people.
One night of boxing will offer nothing less than such amazement, so long as the fight can uphold to some standard. Everything else will come on it’s own.
The effort put into this fight is, really, unsubstantial. Considering how long and tall the barriers stood; preventing boxing from getting the fight it deserves — how can the applause go to a promotional label or television broadcaster, when their background politics prevented this clash since both men were at their best? This isn’t about them — they will see their share of the profits — but about the sport of boxing and one of the first great moments it will have in the 21st century.
This isn’t justice done, either. The right time for this fight was sometime in 2010. Neither currently finds himself in his respective prime, but these are still the two best fighters of their era. Both are well intact and coming off of exceptional performances. So, the fight still holds all of the value — and more — that it would have had five years ago.The anticipation has swelled, and no one wants to see it more than in 2015, even if there was a better fight left to dissipate.
We take it now with a smile and not a beacon of acrimony. The fight of the decade, or, perhaps, the century, is on it’s way. It comes not a moment too soon.