The peak of Floyd Mayweather’s career was when he squared off against Conor McGregor in 2017. Their fight was highly hyped, and even people who aren’t interested in boxing knew about his win. The Saturday night match that took place in Las Vegas moved Mayweather closer to his first $1 billion career earning. He went home with over $200 million while McGregor secured $100 million.
Aside from his fights, shrewd marketing has also hugely contributed to Floyd Mayweather’s big paychecks. Not to mention that he placed a predictive $750,000 on himself when he split from his promoter, Bob Arum, a decade ago. He realized early that he was better off on his own and would make more as an independent boxer. This was a bold move considering the Hall of Fame promoter had worked with Manny Pacquiao, Oscar La Hoya and Muhammad Ali in the past.
Floyd Mayweather’s First Decade of Boxing
Floyd’s boxing career officially began after the 1996 Olympics. This is two years after the first free casino slots opened to the general public. His nickname at the time was Pretty Boy because, unlike his equally amateur teammates, he had fewer scars on his face. He had learned impressive defensive techniques from his uncle, Roger Mayweather, even before his professional career as a boxer began.
Mayweather’s partnership with Bob Arum at the beginning of his career was a fruitful one. The fighter remained undefeated while he was under the Hall of Fame promoter. Floyd earned his first title in 1998 after reeling off 17 straight wins. He also earned $150,000 after his victory against Genaro Hernandez.
Floyd’s paycheck was growing fight after fight,and in 2005, he got his first pay-per-view and another followed in 2006. At this time, his paychecks had steadied within $3 million range. Even though this was good money, Floyd believed he could get more, so he used the opt-out clause in his contract to split from his promoter. The Top Rank contract allowed him to chuck if he played $750,000.
Floyd’s Transition from Pretty Boy to Money Mayweather
After buying his freedom, Floyd started his promotion company and changed his stage name from Pretty Boy to Money Mayweather. You could say that names are powerful because after this transition, no one could stop the Money Man’s success.
He spread his wings and positioned himself as the ultimate showman. Mayweather didn’t waste the opportunities to appear on WrestleMania and Dancing with the Stars. He also build a massive social media following and used the various platforms to take his brand to the next level.
With him calling the shots, Floyd’s paychecks grew exponentially. Because of his decision to represent himself, he managed to bag $25 million after his win against Oscar De La Hoya in a 2007 match. After this, he bagged another 12, $25 million paychecks in succession. Now that the middleman was out, all revenue streams generated by his fights flowed through his promotion company.
Floyd as one of the Highest Paid Athletes
Up until 2013, the Money Man had always been an HBO guy, but when Showtime made him a blockbuster offer, he jumped ship. It was a six-figure deal for Showtime to broadcast his fights on their Pay-Per-View (PPV) arm. Showtime subscribers could access Mayweather’s fights on the network’s All Access series.
The Showtime deal turned out to be the first most lucrative contract in the sports industry. Floyd Mayweather’s fights with Pacquiao and Canelo Alvarez were highly anticipated in 2013. The Canelo fight alone brought in $153 million in PPV revenue. Mayweather’s per fight guarantee was $41.5 million as per the deal with Showtime.
Between 2007 and 2017, the Money Man brought in over $915 million. This is more than any boxer has ever made throughout their professional career. The anticipation surrounding Floyd’s fight with Pacquiao and McGregor in 2015 and 2017 definitely contributed to his huge success.
Floyd Mayweather’s decision to split from his promoter and create his own promotion company was the best decision he ever made as a professional boxer. Being able to call the shots has guaranteed him big paychecks ever since. He might not have hit the $1 billion mark yet, but he is close. The Money Man sure knows how to make money moves both on and off the ring.