Mayweather vs Paul: The Emergence Of Celebrity Boxing
Floyd Mayweather plans to fight YouTube celebrity Logan Paul in a "special exhibition" match in February — but is this a one-off, or part of a larger developing trend?
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Floyd Mayweather almost broke the internet last night with an announcement that he has struck a deal to fight YouTuber and celebrity personality Logan Paul in a “special exhibition” match on February 20th.
Fanmio, a platform that offers meet and greet packages with celebrities, will stream the fight via pay-per-view.
Before we get into the details, let’s discuss the elephant in the room.
Floyd Mayweather is a world-class boxer.
He is undoubtedly one of the best to ever step into a ring and certainly the best of his generation. Mayweather has a pristine professional record of 50-0, with 27 wins coming via knockout.
In total, Mayweather has 15 titles across 5 different weight classes, has sold billions of dollars in pay-per-view, and is just one of 6 athletes in history that have career earnings over $1 billion.
What about Logan Paul?
Well, he has a professional record of 0-1 after losing to fellow YouTuber KSI in 2019.
Simply put, this fight is a joke.
The only problem?
We have entered an age of celebrity boxing, where conditioning, speed, and training don’t matter — only popularity does.
Let me explain…
While Floyd Mayweather has put together a hall-of-fame resume after beating up legendary fighters like Manny Pacquiao, Canelo Alvarez, Oscar De La Hoya, and others — he has occasionally taken the celebrity boxing route also.
Some will disagree, but let’s be honest — Mayweather’s fight against Connor McGregor in 2017 was a celebrity boxing match.
Mayweather heavily promoted the event, messed around for a few rounds, eventually won by knockout, and made over $275 million for one night of work — his largest professional payday ever.
A better example?
On New Year’s Eve in 2018, Floyd Mayweather traveled to Tokyo for a three-round exhibition against 20-year-old kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa.
Mayweather showed up two hours late, was out of shape, and danced around the ring, yet he ended the fight in less than 3 minutes, made Tenshin Nasukawa cry, and left with $9 million — or $3 million per minute.
Point being — when it comes to money, anything goes.
While Logan Paul doesn’t have the boxing resume to compete with a world-class technician like Floyd Mayweather, he certainly has the celebrity status to sell tickets.
Here are Logan Paul’s social stats:
YouTube Subscribers: 22.6 million
Instagram Following: 18.6 million
Twitter Following: 5.8 million
Furthermore, check this out…
The price was cheaper, but Logan Paul vs KSI in 2018 did similar pay-per-view numbers compared to the highly anticipated exhibition match between Mike Tyson & Roy Jones Jr.
With boxing in a state of declining interest & viewership, celebrities can sell tickets.
In the end, Floyd Mayweather will certainly make closer to the $9 million he received for fighting Tenshin Nasukawa than the $275 million he made for fighting Conor McGregor, but since he is the only one with anything to lose — why is he doing it?
Think about it this way…
Given Floyd Mayweather has a professional record of 50-0 against some of the most skilled boxers in the world, I’d place his chances of getting knocked out closer to 0% than 1%.
Are those odds worth a potential $50-$100 million payday?
Mayweather seems to think so.
Ultimately, this fight just signifies a further shift toward the inevitable.
Whether hardcore boxing fans like it or not, we live in a society that places an enhanced value on celebrity status and artificially inflated drama.
As celebrity boxing continues to offer new & legacy streaming networks like DAZN, Triller, HBO and Fanmio increased distribution and high PPV sales, we are only going to see it happen more often.
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From a pay-per-view perspective, Fanmio is actually taking a rather unique approach.
In an attempt to gather a substantial amount of cash up-front and increase guaranteed money to fighters before February 20th, Fanmio has introduced tiered pay-per-view pricing.
It probably won’t work for most events, but it’s definitely a unique approach.
Here’s how it works:
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