They call him "Money" for a reason.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. remains undefeated in the ring and unchallenged at the box office after defeating Marcos Maidana in a punishing welterweight title unification fight. The bout went the full 12 rounds at the MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas on May 3rd before the judges awarded the bloodied Mayweather a victory by majority decision. The result stretched his career record to an unblemished 46-0 and came with yet another massive payday.
Days before the fight, the Nevada State Athletic Commission revealed that Mayweather was guaranteed $32 million for simply stepping into the ring. Never shy about touting his earning -- and spending -- power, Mayweather later tweeted a staggering claim about his possible total earnings from the Maidana fight.
$32M for 36 minutes. I'm waiting for the PPV numbers to come in so I can make another $38M on the back-end. Making it a grand total of $70M.
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) May 6, 2014
Seemingly discounting the months of hard work that went into preparing to fight Maidana after the matchup was announced on Feb. 24, Mayweather also shared an Instagram infographic that broke his guaranteed earnings down by seconds, minutes and rounds spent in the ring.
Despite Mayweather's recent track record of historic earnings that secured him the top spot on Sports Illustrated's list of highest-paid American athletes in 2013 and 2012, Kurt Badenhausen of Forbes believes the $70 million figure from those social media postings is far fetched.
"Mayweather is the highest-paid athlete in the world right now and has created an economic model in boxing where almost all of the net revenue for his fights flows to him," wrote Badenhausen. "His career earnings have reached $400 million, but there is almost no chance that he will clear $70 million for the Maidana fight unless the pay-per-view figures completely blow away everyone’s expectations."
Counting simply the guaranteed $32 million, Mayweather's payday remains something to brag about. The 37-year-old earned more for fighting Maidana than any athlete in any of the North American professional team sports earned for playing their entire 2014 or 2013-2014 seasons, as noted by @SportsTaxMan.
For context, here is a look at some of the highest-paid players in MLB, NBA, NFL and NHL in 2014 in terms of on-field, contractual earnings:
-NBA: Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers, $30,453,805
-MLB: Zack Grienke, Los Angeles Dodgers, $28,000,000
-NFL: Jay Cuter, Chicago Bears, $17,500,000*
-NHL: Shea Weber, Nashville Predators, $14,000,000
(Players salaries via Basketball-Reference, ESPN, Spotrac.com and Forbes)
*Base salary, not including 2014 bonuses
A $32 million payday would also be greater than the combined base salaries of the six highest-paid MLS players in 2014:
-Michael Bradley, Toronto FC, $6,000,000
-Jermain Defoe, Toronto FC, $6,000,000
-Clint Dempsey, Seattle Sounders, $4,913,004
-Robbie Keane, Los Angeles Galaxy, $4,500,000
-Landon Donovan, Los Angeles Galaxy, $4,250,000
-Thierry Henry, New York Red Bulls, $3,750,000
(MLS salaries via MLS Players Union)
If the pay-per-view profits were to lift Mayweather's overall earnings from the Maidana fight to $45 million, then he would have also earned more than two entire MLB teams' opening day rosters in 2014.
-Miami Marlins: $44,985,800
-Houston Astros: $41,836,900
(MLB team payroll data via USA Today)
At $70 million, Mayweather would be earning more than the rosters of 18 of 30 NBA teams during the 2013-2014 NBA season. According to HoopsHype, the Philadelphia 76ers' team payroll of $52,168,057 for the 2013-2014 season was the lowest in the league. At $68,564,040, the Minnesota Timberwolves ranked 13th out of 30 teams. With the NFL salary cap jumping to $133 million in 2014, Mayweather has his work cut out for him if he hopes to singlehandedly out-earn entire 53-man professional football teams during a single season.
Presumably, he'll keep everyone posted as he gets closer.