Top Rank executive event producer Brad Jacobs tells GMAnews.tv in the Philippines that the company is targeting a new Manny Pacquiao pay-per-view record with the Filipino superstar's November 12 fight against Juan Manuel Marquez.
The May 7 pay-per-view from Showtime featuring Pacquiao and "Sugar" Shane Mosley did around 1.3 million pay-per-view buys according to Bob Arum, and Jacobs is saying 1.4 million in this article. Those numbers have never been corroborated by Showtime, and many are skeptical because of that. Pacquiao has in the past done 1.25 million buys for fights with Oscar de la Hoya and Miguel Cotto through HBO pay-per-view, which will be carrying the third fight with Marquez.
In 2008, before Pacquiao became the sales phenom he is today, he and Marquez did 400,000 buys for their rematch, which was four years in the making. As we've said before, that now doesn't look so great, but you have to put it in perspective. It was, again, pre-U.S. superstardom for Pacquiao, and that fight was also a 130-pound bout. The 400K that Marquez and Pacquiao did for that highly-anticipated fight is still a record for main event fighters that weight or below, and for instance sold more than any Oscar de la Hoya fight under welterweight, where the PPV king peaked at 345,000 buys for a junior welterweight fight in 1997 with Miguel Angel Gonzalez.
Where do you think, right now (this could change with big hype), the fight's ceiling for sales is? Marquez did one million buys with Floyd Mayweather Jr in 2009, but that had some help from it being a comeback fight for Floyd. Manny fights twice a year, and unless they can sell the public on the history of this one, it could be "just another Manny Pacquiao fight" in some ways.