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Mayweather vs. Pacquiao 2015: Is it really for the fans?

Joseph Herron Updated
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The laws of economics don’t cease to exist within the sport of boxing merely because athletes like Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao put their lives on the line each and every time they compete in the squared circle…and all for the sake of entertainment.

In a very simplified economic principle: if the demand isn’t there, the money won’t be either, regardless of risk.

For more than five years, the real bosses of boxing clamored to see the two most widely recognizable prizefighters on the planet meet in the squared circle. The fight fans not only asked for it, they demanded it. The lone supporters of the Sweet Science grew more than weary of footing the bill for expensive PPV match-ups for which they didn’t ask.

To kick off the new year, both future Hall of Famers not only received their marching orders, by way of a not so subtle mandate via popular social media outlets, but the two men and their affiliates were also reminded who it was that possesses the real power of the historic sports entertainment outlet…the paying customer.

As a result of the mass scrutiny, Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao finally penned their respective signatures on the dotted line to compete in the ring.

Dedicated fight fans across the globe were overjoyed, relieved, and comforted with the news of the long overdue fight of the century finally taking place. Most of their respective cynicisms were halted somewhat, and a once shaken faith in their favorite sport was momentarily restored…until they discovered the specific details of the fight deal.

Although both Floyd and Manny have indeed accredited the fans for the May 2 super fight finally materializing, tickets have been priced in such way that most longtime fight supporters won’t be able to attend the glorious spectacle.

According to market indicators, ticket prices to attend Mayweather/Pacquiao will be virtually unattainable for most members of the boxing community.

The cheapest seat within the 16K capacity MGM Grand Garden Arena for the upcoming super fight will go for a whopping $1,500. It obviously gets worse from there.

If you want to sit ringside for the supposed “fan driven” event, you’ll have to set up a “whale” account at the MGM Casino’s gambling cage just to be considered. If and only if you’re deemed eligible to purchase one of the exclusive seats, each ticket will cost you an absurd $10,000.

If fight fans merely wish to view the singular event in the comfort of their own living rooms, they can do so for the bargain basement price of only $99.95 in High Definition through their preferred cable or satellite distributor.

And while the communication companies’ contingency rate will be applied in this scenario, they’ll more than likely be taking a much smaller piece of the gross financial pie than their customary 50%. According to numerous sources, Time Warner, Direct TV, and various other distributors will be getting 35% of the gross proceeds generated by PPV sales in America.

So why are fight fans across the U.S. still being asked to pay a big “C-Note” just to see the “Mayweather vs. Pacquiao” dream match-up from home?

All the while, everyone involved insists this fight is indeed being staged on May 2 for the fans, by the fans.

To be fair, let’s resort back to the aforementioned economic philosophy: The demand always sets the market value of any product, entertainment or otherwise.

The demand for the long overdue match-up is obviously at its apex of popularity, but why do all parties involved with this historic prizefight seem content with gouging the long suffering fans who have continuously supported their respective endeavors throughout both fighter’s tenure on the PPV platform?

No one can blame the fighters for wanting to get the most from their perilous endeavors in the ring, but how much is enough?

And when does a fighter start to make a conscious effort in giving back to the fans who helped create his respective stardom?

Everyone involved really shouldn’t make the claim that this historic fight is being staged for the great and passionate fans of the sport. They really can’t even truthfully say that the May 2 fight is being held for posterity or the good of boxing as well.

As expensive as this undertaking actually is for the real bosses of boxing, Mayweather/Pacquiao could ultimately drive away more fans than it attracts if the action isn’t worthy of the hefty price tag in just five short weeks.

Boxing fans will merely resort to what they’ve grown accustomed since initially becoming supporters of the sweet science; take what they’ve been given, and hope for the best.

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