Controversially victorious challenger Abner Mares made more than two times the purse money of defending titlist Joseph Agbeko last Saturday in Las Vegas. Mares' purse was $300,000 for the fight, with Agbeko at $130,000.
Mares (22-0-1, 13 KO) won a majority decision over Agbeko (28-3, 22 KO) in a fight that will unfortunately be more remembered for the endless low blows from Mares, which were never penalized by referee Russell Mora. That the fight had a lot of good action and some fairly big momentum shifts is sadly in the background at the moment, while boxing fans continue to wonder what, if anything, will happen with the Mora situation, and whether or not the IBF will order an immediate rematch in the near future.
For those wondering why Agbeko would make so much less than Mares, a lot of that is due to promotional affiliation. Golden Boy simply can afford to pay Mares more than Don King can pay Agbeko. In March, when Ricardo Mayorga faced Miguel Cotto on Showtime pay-per-view, Top Rank's Cotto made a $1 million purse, compared to Mayorga's $50,000. That was a different level of fight -- and Cotto is a bigger, far more bankable star than anyone else we're talking about here -- but it's sort of the same deal. I think we can all agree that Agbeko deserved a bigger payday, in part because he's a really good fighter, and in part because he got punched in his junk somewhere around 30 times.