25
Nov
2020

Floyd Mayweather faces Pay Per View D-Day, years of work in the balance

Phil Jay 27/10/2020
Floyd Mayweather Gervonta Davis SHO

SHOWTIME

Floyd Mayweather has more than five years of graft on the line as protege Gervonta Davis heads into his Pay Per View debut on Saturday night.

The former pound for pound king snapped up Davis in the mid-2010s when several companies looked at the undefeated youngster.

As Mayweather wound down his own career and ‘Tank’ progressed, it was clear who the veteran wanted to be the future of boxing.

At Mayweather Promotions, the PR machine has been in full effect for weeks, leading up to Davis battling Leo Santa Cruz in a PPV turnover.

Leonard Ellerbe, Mayweather’s right-hand man, and CEO has ramped up his social media activity over the last few weeks. A clear indication of how important Davis being successful, not only in the ring but in the numbers clearly is.

Davis is the spearhead of the company moving forward and has a mass of pressure on his shoulders, which Mayweather and Ellerbe are keen to divert.

“I’m so happy with what Gervonta’s done in his career. He’s one of the biggest stars in the sport. I’ve laid down the blueprint, and I’m going to keep helping him grow,” said Mayweather, beaming about the prospect of having a huge PPV star to guide.

Ellerbe added: “This fight is a tremendous clash of styles. Not only do you have power vs. pressure, but you have two young fighters who are risking it all to prove they’re the best and give the fans a memorable night.”

Floyd Mayweather
@floydmayweather

FLOYD MAYWEATHER TARGET

So what is the target number for Davis this weekend?

Well, as Mayweather used to regularly pull in one million and eventually peaked at over four million, you’d have to think somewhere in the region of seven figures.

Showtime figures since Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor hit 4.3m don’t indicate this is a reachable goal, though.

Times are hard during the pandemic, and Showtime’s last offering featuring the Charlo brother is reported to have struggled to get over 100,000 sales.

The two previous offerings, Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury in December 2018 and Manny Pacquiao vs. Adrien Broner in January 2019, both hit below half a million.

Having Davis enter the paid market in 2020 was always the plan, although nobody banked on a worldwide pandemic.

If those numbers come back lower than expectations, it could be damaging. Although anything over 200,000 may have to be classed as a good night in the circumstances.


FOCUS

As for the fight, Ellerbe can’t wait for his man to deliver.

“Gervonta has really had a fantastic training camp. You can see the focus and determination he has to make a statement on October 31.

“Leo also looks to be in great shape, so it’s all the ingredients for something exceptional.

“We’re excited to bring this fight to the fans in San Antonio. It’s a great fight town, and we know they’re going to appreciate what these two fighters are going to bring into the ring on fight night.”

Never one to hide his feelings for Davis, Mayweather stated: “I’m proud of Gervonta and Leo for getting to this moment.

“Boxing is about testing yourself against the best. Leo has been the best in his weight class before and moved up again and again.

“He and Gervonta are both taking chances to prove that they’re the best.”

Always hitting the heights as a boxer, now it’s time to see if Mayweather is the PPV king as a promoter.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay.