Boxing aficionados may not be the only ones regretting that the Mayweather-Pacquiao megafight never happened.
Manny Pacquiao potentially missed out on $100 million by not agreeing to Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s terms to such a bout when he had the chance, according to Mike Ozanian of Forbes. Negotiations between the two fighters' camps in 2009 broke down over payout splits and Mayweather's desire for Olympic-style drug testing.
In the years since that fight failed to materialize, Pacquiao has suffered two shocking defeats. Mayweather, meanwhile, has continued to improve his record and earning power. Mayweather's recent clinical defeat of Canelo Alvarez was the richest fight ever, according to The Associated Press.
"But a Mayweather-Pacquiao fight would have generated much, much more," Ozanian wrote for Forbes. "Three years ago the split between Mayweather and Pacquiao would have been roughly 50-50 for a fight that would have likely grossed more than $250 million, given Mayweather-Alvarez did over $200 million. After taking out the cut for the pay-per-view carriers, I figure Pacquiao and his camp lost about $100 million in earnings."
Ahead of his junior middleweight unification fight with Alvarez, Mayweather told the Wall Street Journal that Pacquiao could get potentially another chance, on one condition.
"The first thing is this, like I said, it's all about business," Mayweather said when asked by Lee Hawkins of the Wall Street Journal about the possibility the two could fight. "What we can offer Pacquaio, if he is ever a free agent, if he is ever free, we've got a contract that you can come sign. You can sign under Mayweather Promotions, and then we can see where we can go from there."
With the possibility of the two fighting in 2014 and the murky nature of those negotiations in 2009, Alex Groberman of Opposing Views isn't convinced that Pacquaio left quite as much as $100 million on the table.
"If Mayweather’s rumored max payout is $90 million based off a $200 million fight, then there’s no way he and Pacquiao could have both walked away with $90-$100 million in a $250 million fight," Groberman wrote in response to the Forbes piece, citing financial numbers from the Mayweather-Alvarez fight. "Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez got pennies on Mayweather’s dollars – that’s why the latter made so much. Had the split been even moderately equal, Mayweather would’ve made way less."
If there is one constant in boxing it may be that Mayweather is not going to do anything that involves him making "way less." Regardless of the payouts to the fighters, would fans still pay to see Mayweather-Pacquiao?