Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports reports in his latest MMA mailbag that while we're likely to hear numbers by Thursday, he's hearing very, very good things about the success of Mayweather-Marquez on pay-per-view:
The UFC is a privately owned company and does not have to release its pay-per-view sales, which it chooses not to do. Occasionally, we’re able to find out what a particular fight sold, but it’s not often. From what I’m hearing, though, the Mayweather fight had a convincing victory. I’m hearing the Mayweather-Marquez pay-per-view is going to come in at or near 1 million sales. I don’t have a verifiable figure for the UFC, but I believe it will be far lower than 1 million. The boxing number should be released by Thursday at the latest and perhaps on Wednesday.
This would be a huge success for Mayweather, for HBO, for boxing in general, and for everyone involved in this fight on any level. I really never expected they could get near this number, and I recall correctly off the top of my head, this would be the first non-Oscar de la Hoya fight to get to 1,000,000 buys in boxing since Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson in 2002.
It's really amazing if the numbers are true. I expected this show and UFC 103 to split audiences a bit, and the UFC estimates I've heard are around 400,000 for their show, which is a great number considering there weren't any of the UFC's major stars on that card. It was just a good fight card.
I don't want to go into who "won," because if these numbers are accurate, the fact of the matter is everybody won. That's a WHOLE lot of people watching boxing and MMA on one night, especially considering how much they had to pay to do it.
This will also validate Floyd: If these numbers are true, you're damn right he's a superstar, and maybe we diehard fans blinded ourselves a bit by not being terribly excited about this matchup. The casual fan that digs Floyd probably didn't really even care who Juan Manuel Marquez was when this was signed, they were just happy that Floyd was back.
Editor's Note: Just so everyone understands, this is nothing more than a rumor and meant for discussion. It is posted only so that we can gauge what people think about this number. Thus far, many of you aren't buying it. That is understandable. Hatton-Pacquiao was reported much higher at first than it wound up being, too. The bit of "analysis" I give the numbers is just what the affect could be if this number comes back as solid from someone at HBO. It is not yet fact whatsoever. This should be clear.