LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – APRIL 09: Manny Pacquiao celebrates at the end of the 12th round of his welterweight fight against Timothy Bradley Jr. on April 9, 2016 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao won by unanimous decision. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

There was a time when the name Manny Pacquiao would bring viewers to TV and pay per view events. That was in the past. For what was billed as his final fight, Pacquiao as a draw has waned. Bob Arum of Top Rank, the promoter of Pacquiao-Bradley III says if lucky, the fight will draw between 400,000-500,0o0 buys.

Telling, Arum said, “It will be somewhere between those numbers, 400,000 and 500,000. It’s all being added up, but it will be closer to 400,000 than 500,000. Terrible.”

But industry observers feel Arum is being optimistic if he feels the fight will draw 400,000 buys, that when all is said and done, the final figurs won’t even reach 400,000 and that would be even more terrible. And it would mean that the fight will be a big money loser for Top Rank.

Pacquiao had faced Timothy Bradley twice before and the fights were split, but there really wasn’t a groundswell for a third fight. But Arum said the third fight wasn’t the reason for the low numbers. He contributes it more to Pacquiao’s anti-gay comments calling homosexuals “worse than animals” and the anger over last year’s fight with Floyd Mayweather which cost $100 on pay per view, but was a disappointing fight.

“Certainly the pushback from Manny’s gay remarks killed us,” Arum said. “It hurt us a lot. But I think it was also less a reaction to the match than a reaction to the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. It was a reaction like Mayweather got. Mayweather also got punished [by consumers].”

Mayweather’s retirement fight against Andre Berto also had low pay per view numbers.

It appears that fans have tired of Manny Pacquiao and have spoken with their wallets.


About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.