Manny Pacquiao vs Keith Thurman: Keith Aims For 1 Million PPV Buys, Reports Show Not Possible
The legendary eight-time world champion, Manny Pacquiao, will face the quoted undefeated American world champion, Keith Thurman, in a match for the World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight world championship, on July 20, at the "MGM Grand" Garden Arena "of Las Vegas. The Pacquiao vs. Thurman will be televised via FOX PPV, and Thurman reportedly expects a million PPV for the bout.
Manny Pacquiao and his legacy is definitely going to be the anchor for the Pacquiao vs Thurman fight to reach a million pay-per-view. Thurman also has his huge fan base and contribute, but reports show that this may not be possible.
It was only four years ago that Pacquiao’s fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. brought in a record-breaking 4.6 million PPV buys in the match, which is dubbed as the ‘Fight of the Century.’ However, the fight was dull, the undercard dreadfully poor, and the main event disappointing. Add to that the high cost of PPV, which average $100 per household, angered a lot of boxing fans which resulted in Pacquiao’s PPV to go down in his recent fights.
Pacquiao signed with Premier Boxing Champions at the end of last year, and his first fight under the new agreement took place in January, also a pay-per-view fight. Pacquiao defeated Adrien Broner in the main event with figures reportedly achieving only 400,000 pay-per-view units.
On the other hand, Thurman would be making his pay-per-view debut, so the fighter is a rookie at this field. Even though it's his first PPC, his fights have been one of the best television draws in the United States in recent years. The fight of Thurman in 2017 against Danny Garcia peaked at 5.1 million viewers and is proof that Thurman has a huge following base and can get that million PPV.
However, Thurman was out of action for almost two years after that fight. Thurman returned to the ring last January, defeating Josesito Lopez in the main event of a PBC and had brought a lower figure, three million viewers on Fox Sports from the Barclays Center in New York. It’s a lot different now with Pacquiao vs. Thurman asking the boxing public to pay $70 to see them face each other.
Thurman is optimistic and said that if even only one-third of these viewers signup to the Pacquiao vs. Thurman pay-per-view, he’ll be honored, so he encourage all his fans to help aim that one million PPV.
Still, boxing analysts are not convinced that the Pacquiao vs. Thurman fight can get a million PPV. Some are even saying that the fight has no commercial value as neither one of them are in their prime. Thurman just got back from injury and did not look spectacular in his last fight against Josesito Lopez while Pacquiao is at his 40 and has nothing more to prove in boxing as he had faced the best in his time, won and made a great reputation based on his charisma.
The Pacquaio vs. Thurman fight is expected to be an explosive fight regardless of the number of PPV it could get, where the exposed title takes a back seat the price now has everything to do with the honor of these two warriors in the ring. The youth and the power of Thurman could take it to the victory, perhaps by means of a knockout. But don't count Pacquiao out yet as the eight-time world champion has always planned a good ending in the ring and may want to retire now.