Pay-per-view - Wikipedia
Pay-per-view
Pay-per-view (PPV) is a type of pay television or webcast service by which a viewer can purchase events to view via private telecast. The broadcaster shows the event at the same time to everyone ordering it.
Events can be purchased through a multichannel television platform using their electronic program guide, an automated telephone system, or through a live customer service representative. There has been an increasing number of pay-per-views distributed via streaming video online, either alongside or in lieu of carriage through television providers. In 2012, the popular video sharing service YouTube began to allow partners to host live PPV events on the platform.[1]
Events distributed through PPV typically include combat sports events such as boxing and mixed martial arts (focusing primarily on cards that include one or more significant title fights), sports entertainment such as professional wrestling, and concerts. In the past, PPV was often used to distribute telecasts of feature films, as well as adult content such as pornographic films, but the growth of digital cable and streaming media caused these use cases to be subsumed by video on demand systems (which allow viewers to purchase and view pre-recorded content at any time) instead, leaving PPV to focus primarily on live event programs and combat sports.
History
The earliest form of pay-per-view was closed-circuit television, also known as theatre television, where professional boxing telecasts were broadcast live to a select a number of venues, mostly theaters, where viewers paid for tickets to watch the fight live.[2][3] The first fight with a closed-circuit telecast was Joe Louis vs. Jersey Joe Walcott in 1948.[4] Closed-circuit telecasts peaked in popularity with Muhammad Ali in the 1960s and 1970s,[2][3] with "The Rumble in the Jungle" fight drawing 50 million buys worldwide in 1974,[5] and the "Thrilla in Manila" drawing 100 million buys worldwide in 1975.[6] Closed-circuit television was gradually replaced by pay-per-view home television in the 1980s and 1990s.[3]
United States
The Zenith Phonevision system became the first home pay-per-view system to be tested in the United States. Developed in 1951, it used telephone lines to take and receive orders, as well as to descramble a television broadcast signal. The field tests conducted for Phonevision lasted for 90 days and were tested in Chicago, Illinois. The system used IBM punch cards to descramble a signal broadcast during the broadcast station's "off-time". Both systems showed promise, but the Federal Communications Commission denied them the permits to operate.[7]
One of the earliest pay-per-view systems on cable television, the Optical Systems-developed Channel 100, first began service in 1972 in San Diego, California through Mission Cable[8] (which was later acquired by Cox Communications) and TheaterVisioN, which operated out of Sarasota, Florida. These early systems quickly went out of business, as the cable industry adopted satellite technology and as flat-rate pay television services such as Home Box Office (HBO) became popular.
While most pay-per-view services were delivered via cable, there were a few over-the-air pay TV stations that offered pay-per-view broadcasts in addition to regularly scheduled broadcasts of movies and other entertainment. These stations, which operated for a few years in Chicago, Los Angeles and some other cities, broadcast "scrambled" signals that required descrambler devices to convert the signal into standard broadcast format. These services were marketed as ON-TV.
Professional boxing during 1960s–1970s
The first home pay-per-view cable television broadcast was the Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson rematch in 1960, when 25,000 TelePrompTer subscribers mailed $2 to watch Patterson regain the heavyweight title.[9] The third Patterson–Johansson match in 1961 was later viewed by 100,000 paid cable subscribers.[10] Muhammad Ali had several fights on early pay-per-view home television, including Cassius Clay vs. Doug Jones in 1963,[11] and Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston[12] which drew 250,000 buys on cable television in 1964.[13]
Professional boxing was largely introduced to pay-per-view cable television with the "Thrilla in Manila" fight between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier in September 1975. The fight sold 500,000 pay-per-view buys on HBO.[14] There was also another major title fight aired on pay-per-view in 1980, when Roberto Durán defeated Sugar Ray Leonard. Cable companies offered the match for $10, and about 155,000 customers paid to watch the fight.[15][16]
1980s–2000s
A major pay-per-view event[citation needed] occurred on September 16, 1981, when Sugar Ray Leonard fought Thomas "Hitman" Hearns for the World Welterweight Championship. Viacom Cablevision in Nashville, Tennessee – the first system to offer the event – saw over 50 percent of its subscriber base purchase the fight.[citation needed] Leonard visited Nashville to promote the fight, and the event proved such a success that Viacom themed its annual report for that year around it.[citation needed] Viacom marketing director Pat Thompson put together the fight, and subsequently put together additional PPV fights, wrestling matches, and even a televised Broadway play.[citation needed]
After leaving Viacom, Thompson became head of Sports View and produced the first pay-per-view football game on October 16, 1983: a college football game between the University of Tennessee and the University of Alabama from Birmingham, Alabama.[citation needed] Sports View played a role in building pay-per-view networks,[citation needed] and became the early pioneer in developing TigerVision for Louisiana State University, TideVision for Alabama and UT Vol Seat for Tennessee. Sports View also produced the Ohio State-Michigan football game for pay-per-view in November 1983.
In 1985, the first pay-per-view cable channels in the United States – Viewer's Choice (now In Demand), Cable Video Store, First Choice and Request TV – began operation within days of each other.[citation needed] Viewer's Choice serviced both home satellite dish and cable customers, while Request TV, though broadcasting to cable viewers, would not become available to satellite subscribers until the 1990s.[citation needed] First Choice PPV was available on Rogers Cablesystems in the United States and Canada. After Paragon Cable acquired the Rogers Cablesystems franchise in San Antonio, Texas, First Choice continued to be carried until Time Warner Cable bought Paragon in 1996. In the United States, pay-per-view broadcasters transmit without advertisements, similar to conventional flat-rate pay television services.
The term "pay-per-view" did not come into general use until the late 1980s[citation needed] when companies such as Viewer's Choice, HBO and Showtime started using the system to show movies and some of their productions. Viewer's Choice carried movies, concerts and other events, with live sporting events such as WrestleMania being the most predominant programming. Prices ranged from $3.99 to $49.99, while HBO and Showtime, with their event production legs TVKO and SET Pay Per View, would offer championship boxing matches ranging from $14.99 to $54.99.[citation needed]
ESPN later began to broadcast college football and basketball games on pay-per-view through its services ESPN GamePlan and ESPN Full Court, which were eventually sold as full-time out-of-market sports packages.[citation needed] The boxing undercard Latin Fury, shown on June 28, 2003, became ESPN's first boxing card on pay-per-view and also the first pay-per-view boxing card held in Puerto Rico.[citation needed] Pay-per-view has provided a revenue stream for professional wrestling circuits such as WWE, Impact Wrestling, All Elite Wrestling (AEW), World Championship Wrestling (WCW), Ring of Honor (ROH) and Lucha Libre AAA World Wide (AAA).
WWE chairman and chief executive officer Vince McMahon is considered by many as one of the icons of pay-per-view promotion. McMahon owns the domain name payperview.com, which redirects to the WWE Network website.[17]
With the rise of direct broadcast satellite services in the 1990s, this meant more services exclusively for DBS users appeared. DirecTV had Direct Ticket (which, in addition to movies and special events, also included PPV sports packages, most notably NFL Sunday Ticket), while Dish Network had Dish On Demand. PrimeStar, on the other hand, utilized pre-existing services like Viewer's Choice and Request TV (as it was owned by a number of major cable providers), though promotional material bannered all PPV services under the name of PrimeCinema.
HBO PPV (professional boxing)
In 2006, HBO generated 3.7 million pay-per-view buys with $177 million in gross sales. The only year with more buys previously, 1999, had a total of 4 million. The former record fell in 2007 when HBO sold 4.8 million PPV buys with $255 million in sales.[18] BY 2014, HBO had generated 59.3 million buys and $3.1 billion in revenue since its 1991 debut with Evander Holyfield-George Foreman.[19]
1999 differed radically from 2006: 1999 saw four major fight cards: De La Hoya-Trinidad (1.4 million buys), Holyfield-Lewis I (1.2 million), Holyfield-Lewis II (850,000) and De La Hoya-Quartey (570,000). By contrast, only one pay-per-view mega-fight took place in 2006: De La Hoya-Mayorga (925,000 buys). Rahman-Maskaev bombed with under 50,000. The other eight PPV cards that year all fell in the 325,000–450,000 range. Pay-per-view fights in that range almost always generate more money for the promoter and fighters than HBO wants to pay for an HBO World Championship Boxing license-fee.[citation needed]
In May 2007, the super-welterweight boxing match between Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr. on HBO PPV became the biggest-selling non-heavyweight title fight, with a little more than 2.5 million buyers.[20] The fight itself generated roughly $139 million in domestic PPV revenue, making it the most lucrative prizefight of that era. The record stood until 2015 before it was broken by Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao in a fight dubbed as the "Fight of the Century" on May 2, 2015 which generated 4.6 million ppv buys and a revenue of over $400 million.[21]
The leading PPV attraction, Floyd Mayweather Jr. has generated approximately 24 million buys and $1.6 billion in revenue. Manny Pacquiao, ranked second, has generated approximately 20.1 million buys and $1.2 billion in revenue.[22][23]Oscar De La Hoya, has "sold" approximately 14 million units in total, giving $700 million in domestic television receipts and stands third. In fourth place in buys, Evander Holyfield has achieved 12.6 million units ($550 million); and at fifth, Mike Tyson has reached 12.4 million units ($545 million).[24]
Ross Greenburg, then president of HBO Sports, called the expansion of pay-per-view "the biggest economic issue in boxing", stating "I can't tell you that pay-per-view helps the sport because it doesn't. It hurts the sport because it narrows our audience, but it's a fact of life. Every time we try to make an HBO World Championship Boxing fight, we're up against mythical pay-per-view numbers. HBO doesn't make a lot of money from pay-per-view. There's usually a cap on what we can make. But the promoters and fighters insist on pay-per-view because that's where their greatest profits lie."[25]
"It's a big problem," Greenburg continues. "It's getting harder and harder to put fighters like Manny Pacquiao on HBO World Championship Boxing. If Floyd Mayweather beats Oscar, he might never fight on HBO World Championship Boxing again. But if HBO stopped doing pay-per-view, the promoters would simply do it on their own [like Bob Arum did with Cotto-Malignaggi in June 2006] or find someone else who will do it for them."[25]
Former HBO Sports President Seth Abraham concurs, saying, "I think, if Lou (DiBella) and I were still at HBO, we'd be in the same pickle as far as the exodus of fights to pay-per-view is concerned."[26]
Ultimate Fighting Championship
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), a mixed martial arts promotion, was a relative newcomer to the PPV market. However, the promotion experienced a surge in popularity in the mid-2000s, credited initially to the popularity of an associated reality show on the cable channel Spike, The Ultimate Fighter. UFC 52—the first UFC event since its premiere, broke the promotion's record with almost 300,000 buys (in comparison to 250,000 for UFC 5).[27][28] PPV numbers escalated further in 2006, with its events taking in a gross revenue of $222 million.[29] In October 2016, it was reported that 42% of the UFC's "content revenue" in 2015 came from pay-per-view buys, followed by U.S. and international media rights.
In 2018, UFC 229 would pull an all-time record for the promotion, with estimates indicating that the event attracted nearly 2.4 million buys, breaking the 1.65 million buy record set by UFC 202.[30]
In March 2019, as part of a larger contract with ESPN for media rights in the United States, it was announced that future UFC pay-per-views will only be sold to subscribers of the network's streaming service ESPN+.[31]
Professional wrestling
Professional wrestling has a long history of running pay-per-view events. WWE (then WWF) launched its first pay-per-view event in 1985 with its annual flagship event WrestleMania and has run numerous others throughout the years. Although it still offers its events via traditional PPV outlets, they have also been included at no additional charge as part of a larger, subscription-based streaming service known as WWE Network, which as of 2021 is now a part of the NBCUniversal streaming service Peacock in the United States. The service also includes original programming (such as documentary-style series and other wrestling programs) and an on-demand archive of events and television episodes from WWE's library. Following WrestleMania 34, the service had 2.12 million subscribers.[32][33] Other major organizations such as World Championship Wrestling, Extreme Championship Wrestling, Impact Wrestling, Ring of Honor, and All Elite Wrestling have also run pay-per-view events.
Concerts
In 2009, the live streaming Broadcast of The Allman Brothers Band 40th Anniversary show, live from the Beacon Theater in NYC, was the largest on line pay per view streaming concert event, grossing in excess of $300,000. The event was produced by Onstream Media for Moogis.com.[34]
In 2015, PPV broadcasts of the Fare Thee Well: Celebrating 50 Years of the Grateful Dead tour set a record for buys for a music event, with over 400,000.[35]
United Kingdom and Ireland
Viewers in the United Kingdom and Ireland can access pay-per-view via satellite, cable and over-the-internet television services, mainly for films, boxing, mixed martial arts and American professional wrestling via services such as Sky Box Office and BT Sport Box Office. The last couple of years has seen the number of pay-per-view boxing events significantly increase and currently all of the UK's top fights are only available via pay-per-view. Broadcasters (most notably PremPlus) have abandoned their aspirations to introduce PPV into other sports market due to poor interest from the public.
In October 2020 during the 2020-21 season, the Premier League experimented with PPV telecasts of football matches not selected for broadcasts by its main rightsholders (which are usually blacked out 3:00 p.m. kickoffs, amid the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom, which prevents any attendance of the matches). However, the matches proved unpopular, with team supporters' groups urging fans to make donations to charity instead, and the Premier League announcing that it would allocate the extra matches among its existing rightsholders (BT and Sky, as well as Amazon Prime Video and BBC Sport, with some on free-to-air TV) through at least the end of 2020, as it had done during the conclusion of the previous season.[36][37][38][39]
Canada
In Canada, most specialty television providers provide pay-per-view programming through one or more services. In all cases, prices typically range from around C$4.99 (for movies) up to $50 or more for special events.
Initially, there were three major PPV providers in Canada; Viewers Choice operated in Eastern Canada as a joint venture of Astral Media, Rogers Communications, and TSN. Western International Communications operated a separate service in the west initially known as Home Theatre; it was later rebranded as Viewers Choice under license.
Viewers Choice Canada was a partner in a French-language PPV service known as Canal Indigo, which is now entirely owned by Videotron. Bell Canada launched a PPV service for its ExpressVu television provider known as Vu! in 1999.
Home Theatre was later acquired by Shaw Communications; after gaining permission to operate nationally, it re-branded as a white-label PPV known internally as Shaw PPV in December 2007. In 2014, due to Bell Media's majority ownership of Viewers Choice because of its acquisition of Astral, and because both Bell and Rogers now ran their own in-house PPV operations (Vu! and Sportsnet PPV), Viewers Choice was shut down.[40]
Mainland Europe
In Romania, cable communications operator UPC Romania has notified the National Audiovisual Council (CNA) on the intention to introduce in January, February 2014 at the latest, an on-demand audiovisual media service called Agerpres. According to the manager of UPC Romania-owned Smaranda Radoi UPC, will allow customers to watch movies on demand or live events; as well as broadcasts of performances, concerts and sporting events.
In November 2008, pay-per-view made its debut in Albania through Digitalb on terrestrial and satellite television, with the channel DigiGold.[41]
In France, launched in the late 1990s, Canalsat (Ciné+) and TPS (Multivision) operate their own pay-per-view service. While CanalSat holds the rights to live soccer matches for France's Ligue 1, TPS had the rights for Boxe matches. In 2007, Multivision service ceased by the end of TPS service which merged with Canalsat. Nowadays, Ciné+ is the only existing pay-per-view service in France.
In Croatia, Fight Channel is broadcasting martial arts events organized by the world's most prominent fighting organizations, such as the UFC, K-1, HBO Boxing, Dream, Glory WS, World Series of Boxing etc. and its pay-per-view service covers the Balkans region.
Sky Deutschland, accessible in Germany, Austria and partially in Switzerland, provided nine PPV-Channels called "Sky Select", where their regular Pay-TV customers can see movies or various sports events such as boxing or soccer.[42] As of 1. October 2020 only sport and wrestling events remained on PPV as movies were changed towards a streaming service.[43]
South America
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Per nations with Pay-Per-View or PPV system in South América:
In Argentina, Torneos y Competencias is a producer and sports events organization that are broadcasts live main matches of Argentine Soccer in four categories on TyC Sports, TyC Max (six channels), TyC Sports 2, TyC Sports 4 and TyC Sports 5.
In Brazil, in the soccer main matches of Serie A (Six games per matchday) and Serie B (Four games per matchday) in two categories of Brazilian Soccer are broadcast live on Premiere FC and SporTV. The Serie C Championship are broadcast live on SporTV with two games per matchday in Pay TV. In other sports are broadcast live on NBB TV (Exclusive channel of Brazilian Basketball League in Premium system).
In Chile, the exclusive rights of Chilean Soccer are owned by TV Fútbol and broadcast live on a channel called Canal Del Fútbol (The Soccer Channel), also known CDF. Sports Field S.A. has exclusive rights to games on the Chilean professional basketball league, which are broadcast live vía CDO (Premium Signal).
In Paraguay, the Teledeportes producer business have exclusive rights to broadcast live main matches of Paraguayan Soccer in four categories vía Tigo Max and Tigo Sports. Teledeportes have live broadcast live of Paraguayan Basketball League is are broadcast live Tuesday at 9:00 pm on Tigo Sports (K.O 21:15) and Wednesday at 8:55 pm on Tigo Max (K.O 21:10).
In Uruguay, the Tenfield producer business and sports events organization have television exclusive rights for the Uruguayan soccer and basketball club championships, which are broadcast on VTV and VTV Plus.
Australia and the Pacific Islands
Foxtel and Optus Vision introduced pay-per-view direct to home television in Australia in the mid-to-late 1990s. Foxtel had Event TV (until it transformed into its current form; Main Event) while, Optus Vision had Main Attraction Pay-Per-View as its provider. As of 2005, Main Event is the current pay-per-view provider through Foxtel and Optus cable/satellite subscription.
Sky Pacific started a service in Fiji in 2005 and then expanded into American Samoa, Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati (East), Nauru, New Caledonia, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu, with one, out of their 25 channels, being Pay-Per-View.[44]
Asia
In Malaysia, Astro's Astro Box Office service launched in 2000 in the form of the free-to-air "Astro Showcase".
In Japan, SkyPerfecTV subscribers can receive one-click pay-per-view access to hundreds of channels supplying domestic and international sporting events (including WWE events), movies, and specialty programming, either live or later on continuous repeat on its channel.
In India a pay-per-view service operates; however, pay-per-view sports broadcasts are available. Now also live events like WWE.[citation needed]
List of pay-per-view bouts
Boxing
Worldwide
The following is a list of boxing fights that have generated over 1 million pay-per-view buys worldwide. These figures include closed-circuit theatre television (CCTV), pay-per-view home television (PPV), and pay-per-view online streaming (iPPV).
   — Fights which held the worldwide record in terms of sales and/or revenue
DateFightNetwork(s)SalesRevenue (est.)Revenue (est. inflation)
March 8, 1971Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier
Closed-circuit theatre TV
2,590,000[45][46]$45,750,000[47][48]$300,000,000
October 30, 1974Muhammad Ali vs. George Foreman
Closed-circuit theatre TV
50,000,000[5]$100,000,000[49][50]$500,000,000
October 1, 1975Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier III
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
  • HBO
100,000,000[6]$100,000,000$500,000,000
September 27, 1976Muhammad Ali vs. Ken Norton III
Closed-circuit theatre TV
1,500,000[51]$33,500,000[52][53]$150,000,000
June 20, 1980Roberto Durán vs. Sugar Ray Leonard
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
  • HBO
1,655,000[54][15]$30,000,000[55]$90,000,000
June 11, 1982Larry Holmes vs. Gerry Cooney
Closed-circuit theatre TV
2,000,000[56]$20,000,000[3]$50,000,000
April 6, 1987Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Marvin Hagler
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
  • HBO
3,150,000[3]$60,000,000[57]$140,000,000
June 27, 1988Mike Tyson vs. Michael Spinks
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
  • HBO
1,500,000[58][59]$70,000,000[57]$150,000,000
April 19, 1991Evander Holyfield vs. George Foreman
HBO
1,400,000[60]$75,000,000[61]$140,000,000
June 28, 1991Mike Tyson vs. Donovan Ruddock II1,250,000[62]$49,142,000[63][64]$90,000,000
August 19, 1995Mike Tyson vs. Peter McNeeley
Showtime
1,600,000[65]$110,000,000[66][67]$180,000,000
March 16, 1996Frank Bruno vs. Mike Tyson II2,060,000[65][68]$98,000,000[69]$162,000,000
September 7, 1996Mike Tyson vs. Bruce Seldon
Showtime
1,150,000[60]$63,810,000[65]$105,000,000
November 9, 1996Mike Tyson vs. Evander Holyfield
Showtime
1,600,000[65]$94,200,000[65]$160,000,000
June 28, 1997Mike Tyson vs. Evander Holyfield II
  • Showtime
  • Sky Box Office
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
2,670,000[3][70][71]$180,000,000[72]$290,000,000
September 18, 1999Oscar De La Hoya vs. Félix Trinidad
HBO
1,400,000[60]$74,100,000[73]$120,000,000
June 8, 2002Lennox Lewis vs. Mike Tyson
  • HBO
  • Showtime
  • Sky Box Office
2,720,000[60][74]$112,000,000[75]$161,000,000
May 5, 2007Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.
  • HBO
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
2,450,000[60][76]$165,000,000[77]$200,000,000
December 8, 2007Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Ricky Hatton
  • HBO
  • Sky Box Office
2,400,000[78]$134,000,000[78]$170,000,000
December 6, 2008Oscar De La Hoya vs. Manny Pacquiao
HBO
1,250,000[60]$100,000,000[77]$120,000,000
May 2, 2009Manny Pacquiao vs. Ricky Hatton
  • HBO
  • Sky Box Office
1,750,000[79][80]$80,200,000[a]$96,000,000
September 19, 2009Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Juan Manuel Márquez
HBO
1,060,000[81]$58,810,000[82]$71,000,000
November 14, 2009Manny Pacquiao vs. Miguel Cotto
HBO
1,250,000[83]$78,850,000[84]$95,000,000
May 1, 2010Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Shane Mosley
HBO
1,400,000[60]$89,330,000[85][67]$106,000,000
November 13, 2010Manny Pacquiao vs. Antonio Margarito
HBO
1,150,000[86]$69,400,000[87]$80,000,000
May 7, 2011Manny Pacquiao vs. Shane Mosley
Showtime
1,340,000[88]$83,900,000[89]$97,000,000
September 17, 2011Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs Victor Ortiz
HBO
1,250,000[90]$87,440,000[91][67]$101,000,000
November 13, 2011Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Márquez III
HBO
1,400,000[92]$88,580,000[93][67]$100,000,000
May 5, 2012Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Miguel Cotto
HBO
1,500,000[94]$94,000,000[66]$106,000,000
December 8, 2012Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Márquez IV
HBO
1,150,000[95]$80,400,000[96]$90,000,000
September 14, 2013Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Canelo Álvarez
Showtime
2,200,000[97]$150,000,000[21]$170,000,000
May 2, 2015Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao
  • HBO
  • Showtime
  • Sky Box Office
  • Closed-circuit theatre TV
5,773,000[98][99][100]$500,000,000[101]$500,000,000
April 29, 2017Anthony Joshua vs. Wladimir Klitschko
Sky Box Office
1,631,000[102][103]$64,000,000[104]$64,000,000
August 26, 2017Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregor
  • Showtime
  • Sky Box Office
5,174,000$500,000,000[105]$500,000,000
September 16, 2017Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin
HBO
1,300,000[106]$100,000,000[106]$100,000,000
March 31, 2018Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph Parker
Sky Box Office
1,832,000[107][103]$56,000,000[108][109]$60,000,000
August 25, 2018KSI vs. Logan Paul1,300,000[110]$16,500,000[111][112]$16,500,000
Sep 15, 2018Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin II
HBO
1,100,000[113]$117,000,000[113]$117,000,000
Sep 22, 2018Anthony Joshua vs. Alexander Povetkin
Sky Box Office
1,247,000[114][103]$52,000,000​[115]​[116]​[109]$53,000,000
December 7, 2019Andy Ruiz Jr. vs. Anthony Joshua II
Sky Box Office
1,575,000[117]
February 22, 2020Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury II1,200,000 [118]$112,900,000 [119]
December 5, 2020Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr.1,600,000[120]$80,000,000[120]$80,000,000[120]
United States (closed-circuit theatre TV)
Select boxing buy rates at American closed-circuit theatre television venues between 1951 and 2015:
   — Fights which held the US closed-circuit sales record in terms of buys and/or revenue
DateFightBuysRevenueRevenue (inflation)
June 15, 1951Joe Louis vs. Lee Savold81,022[121]$100,000[122]$1,000,000
September 12, 1951Sugar Ray Robinson vs. Randolph Turpin II100,000[123]$200,000[123]$1,990,000
September 23, 1952Rocky Marciano vs. Joe Walcott40,000[124]$192,000[125]$1,870,000
September 21, 1955Rocky Marciano vs. Archie Moore300,000[126]$1,125,000[127]$10,870,000
September 23, 1957Sugar Ray Robinson vs. Carmen Basilio500,000[128]$1,750,000[129]$13,820,000
March 25, 1958Sugar Ray Robinson vs. Carmen Basilio II400,000[130]$2,000,000[131]$17,940,000
August 18, 1958Floyd Patterson vs. Roy Harris192,762[132]$763,437[132]$6,780,000
June 26, 1959Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson244,000[133]$1,032,000[133]$9,160,000
June 20, 1960Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson II500,000[134]$3,000,000[135]$26,240,000
March 13, 1961Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson III500,000[136]$2,500,000[136]$21,650,000
September 25, 1962Floyd Patterson vs. Sonny Liston600,000[137]$3,200,000[45]$27,380,000
March 13, 1963Cassius Clay vs. Doug Jones150,000[138]$500,000[11]$4,230,000
July 22, 1963Floyd Patterson vs. Sonny Liston II563,000[45]$4,747,690[139]$40,620,000
February 25, 1964Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston700,000[140]$5,000,000[140]$41,700,000
January 2, 1965Floyd Patterson vs. George Chuvalo300,000[141]$800,000[142]$6,570,000
May 25, 1965Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston II630,000[143]$4,300,000[2]$35,310,000
November 22, 1965Muhammad Ali vs. Floyd Patterson500,000[144]$4,000,000[2]$32,800,000
November 14, 1966Muhammad Ali vs. Cleveland Williams500,000[145]$3,750,000[145]$30,800,000
February 6, 1967Muhammad Ali vs. Ernie Terrell800,000[146]$4,000,000[146]$31,910,000
October 26, 1970Muhammad Ali vs. Jerry Quarry630,000[147][148]$3,500,000[149]$23,320,000
March 8, 1971Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier2,500,000[45]$45,000,000[47]$288,000,000
October 30, 1974Muhammad Ali vs. George Foreman3,000,000[3]$60,000,000[3]$310,000,000
October 1, 1975Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier III3,000,000[3]$60,000,000[3]$300,000,000
September 27, 1976Muhammad Ali vs. Ken Norton III1,500,000[51]$30,000,000[52]$140,000,000
Jun 20, 1980Roberto Durán vs. Sugar Ray Leonard1,500,000[54]$22,000,000[150]$69,100,000
June 11, 1982Larry Holmes vs. Gerry Cooney2,000,000[56]$20,000,000[3]$53,630,000
April 15, 1985Marvin Hagler vs. Thomas Hearns700,000[151]$10,500,000[152]$25,270,000
April 6, 1987Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Marvin Hagler3,000,000[3]$40,000,000[153]$91,120,000
June 27, 1988Mike Tyson vs. Michael Spinks800,000[58]$32,000,000[58]$70,020,000
June 28, 1997Evander Holyfield vs. Mike Tyson II120,000[71]$9,000,000[3]$14,510,000
May 5, 2007Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.50,000[76]$2,750,000[154]$3,430,000
May 2, 2015Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao173,000[100]$25,900,000[100]$28,280,000
United States (PPV home television)
Select PPV boxing buy-rates (mainly from HBO, Showtime and Top Rank) between 1960 and 2020:
   — Fights which held the US sales record on PPV home television
DateFightResultCarrierBuy rate
June 20, 1960Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson IIPatterson wins by KO in round 5TelePrompTer25,000[9]
March 13, 1961Floyd Patterson vs. Ingemar Johansson IIIPatterson wins by KO in round 6TelePrompTer100,000[10]
September 25, 1962Floyd Patterson vs. Sonny ListonListon wins by KO in round 1TelePrompTer100,000[155]
February 25, 1964Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny ListonAli wins by RTD in round 6WHCT[12]250,000[13]
Oct 1, 1975Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier IIIAli wins by TKO in round 14HBO500,000[14]
Jun 20, 1980Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Roberto DuránDurán wins by UD (145-144, 148-147, 146-144)HBO155,000[15]
Sep 16, 1981Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Thomas HearnsLeonard wins by TKO in round 14HBO583,200[156]
Apr 15, 1985Marvin Hagler vs. Thomas HearnsHagler wins by TKO in round 3HBO100,000[151]
Apr 6, 1987Marvin Hagler vs. Sugar Ray LeonardLeonard wins by SD (118-110, 113-115, 115-113)HBO150,000[3]
Jun 27, 1988Mike Tyson vs. Michael SpinksTyson wins by KO in round 1HBO700,000[59]
Nov 7, 1988Donny Lalonde vs. Sugar Ray LeonardLeonard wins by TKO in round 9HBO700,000[157]
Oct 25, 1990Buster Douglas vs. Evander HolyfieldHolyfield wins by KO in round 3Showtime1,000,000[59]
March 18, 1991Mike Tyson vs. Donovan RuddockTyson wins by TKO in round 7Showtime960,000[158]
Apr 19, 1991Evander Holyfield vs. George ForemanHolyfield wins by UD (116–111, 117–110, 115–112)HBO1,400,000[60]
Jun 28, 1991Mike Tyson vs. Donovan Ruddock IITyson wins by UD (113–109, 114–108, 114–108)Showtime1,250,000[62]
Oct 18, 1991Ray Mercer vs. Tommy MorrisonMercer wins by KO in round 5HBO200,000[159]
Jun 19, 1992Evander Holyfield vs. Larry HolmesHolyfield wins by UD (117–111, 116–112, 116–112)HBO730,000[160]
Nov 13, 1992Evander Holyfield vs. Riddick BoweBowe wins by UD (117–110, 117–110, 115–112)HBO900,000[161]
Jun 7, 1993George Foreman vs. Tommy MorrisonMorrison wins by UD (117–110, 117–110, 118–108)HBO600,000[162]
Sep 10, 1993Pernell Whitaker vs. Julio César ChávezMajority draw (115–113, 115–115, 115–115)Showtime740,000[163]
Nov 6, 1993Riddick Bowe vs. Evander Holyfield IIHolyfield wins by MD (115–113, 115–114, 114–114)HBO950,000[164]
Nov 18, 1994James Toney vs. Roy Jones Jr.Jones Jr. wins by UD (119–108, 118–109, 117–110)HBO300,000[165]
May 6, 1995Oscar De La Hoya vs. Rafael RuelasDe La Hoya wins by TKO in round 2HBO330,000[166]
Aug 19, 1995Mike Tyson vs. Peter McNeeleyTyson wins by DQ in round 1Showtime1,600,000[65]
Nov 4, 1995Riddick Bowe vs. Evander Holyfield IIIBowe wins by TKO in round 8HBO650,000[167]
Mar 16, 1996Frank Bruno vs. Mike Tyson IITyson wins by TKO in round 3Showtime1,400,000[65]
Sep 7, 1996Mike Tyson vs. Bruce SeldonTyson wins by TKO in round 1Showtime1,150,000[60]
Nov 9, 1996Mike Tyson vs. Evander HolyfieldHolyfield wins by TKO in round 11Showtime1,600,000[65]
Apr 12, 1997Pernell Whitaker vs. Oscar De La HoyaDe La Hoya wins by UD (115–111, 116–110, 116–110)HBO720,000[168]
Jun 28, 1997Mike Tyson vs. Evander Holyfield IIHolyfield wins by DQ in round 3Showtime1,990,000[60]
Sep 13, 1997Oscar De La Hoya vs. Héctor CamachoDe La Hoya wins by UD (120–106, 120–105, 118–108)HBO560,000[168]
Oct 4, 1997Lennox Lewis vs. Andrew GolotaLewis wins by KO in round 1HBO300,000[169]
Nov 8, 1997Evander Holyfield vs. Michael Moorer IIHolyfield wins by RTD in round 8Showtime550,000[170]
Jan 16, 1999Mike Tyson vs. Francois BothaTyson wins by KO in round 5Showtime750,000[171]
Mar 13, 1999Evander Holyfield vs. Lennox LewisSplit draw (116–113, 113–115, 115–115)HBO1,200,000[172]
Sep 18, 1999Oscar De La Hoya vs. Félix TrinidadTrinidad wins by MD (115–113, 115–114, 114–114)HBO1,400,000[60]
Nov 13, 1999Evander Holyfield vs. Lennox Lewis IILewis wins by UD (116–112, 117–111, 115–113)HBO850,000[172]
Apr 29, 2000Lennox Lewis vs. Michael GrantLewis wins by KO in round 2HBO340,000[172]
Jun 17, 2000Oscar De La Hoya vs. Shane MosleyMosley wins by SD (116–112, 115–113, 113–115)HBO590,000[168]
Sep 9, 2000Roy Jones Jr. vs. Eric HardingJones Jr. wins by RTD in round 10HBO125,000[173]
Oct 20, 2000Mike Tyson vs. Andrew GolotaTyson wins by TKO in round 3 (later changed to an NC)Showtime450,000[174]
Nov 11, 2000Lennox Lewis vs. David TuaLewis wins by UD (119–109, 118–110, 117–111)HBO420,000[172]
Mar 3, 2001Evander Holyfield vs. John Ruiz IIRuiz wins by UD (116–110, 115–111, 114–111)Showtime185,000[175]
Apr 7, 2001Naseem Hamed vs. Marco Antonio BarreraBarrera wins by UD (116–111, 115–112, 115–112)HBO310,000[176]
Jun 8, 2001Laila Ali vs. Jacqui Frazier-LydeAli wins by MD (73–79, 75–77, 76–76)?125,000[177]
Nov 17, 2001Hasim Rahman vs. Lennox Lewis IILewis wins by KO in round 4HBO460,000[178]
Jun 8, 2002Lennox Lewis vs. Mike TysonLewis wins by KO in round 8HBO/Showtime1,970,000[60]
Sep 14, 2002Oscar De La Hoya vs. Fernando VargasDe La Hoya wins by TKO in round 11HBO935,000[168]
Feb 22, 2003Mike Tyson vs. Clifford EtienneTyson wins by KO in round 1Showtime100,000[175]
Mar 1, 2003John Ruiz vs. Roy Jones Jr.Jones Jr. wins by UD (118–110, 117–111, 116–112)HBO525,000[175]
Sep 13, 2003Oscar De La Hoya vs. Shane Mosley IIMosley wins by UD (113–115, 113–115, 113–115)HBO950,000[168]
Oct 4, 2003James Toney vs. Evander HolyfieldToney wins by TKO in round 9Showtime150,000[179]
Nov 8, 2003Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr.Jones Jr. wins by MD (117–111, 116–112, 114–114)HBO302,000[180]
May 15, 2004Roy Jones Jr. vs. Antonio Tarver IITarver wins by KO in round 2HBO360,000[181]
Sep 18, 2004Bernard Hopkins vs. Oscar De La HoyaHopkins wins by KO in round 9HBO1,000,000[168]
Dec 11, 2004Vitali Klitschko vs. Danny WilliamsKlitschko wins by TKO in round 8HBO120,000[182]
Mar 19, 2005Érik Morales vs. Manny PacquiaoMorales wins by UD (115–113, 115–113, 115–113)HBO345,000[183]
Jun 11, 2005Mike Tyson vs. Kevin McBrideMcBride wins by TKO in round 7Showtime250,000[184]
Jun 25, 2005Arturo Gatti vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.Mayweather Jr. wins by RTD in round 6HBO340,000[183]
Oct 1, 2005Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr. IIITarver wins by UD (117–111, 116–112, 116–112)HBO405,000[185]
Jan 21, 2006Manny Pacquiao vs Érik Morales IIPacquiao wins by TKO in round 10HBO360,000[186]
Feb 25, 2006Shane Mosley vs Fernando VargasMosley wins by TKO in round 10HBO415,000[187]
Apr 8, 2006Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Zab JudahMayweather Jr. wins by UD (116–112, 117–111, 119–109)HBO375,000[186]
May 6, 2006Ricardo Mayorga vs. Oscar De La HoyaDe La Hoya wins by TKO in round 6HBO925,000[188]
May 6, 2006Manny Pacquiao vs. Óscar LariosPacquiao wins by UD (117–110, 118–108, 120–106)Top Rank120,000[189]
Jul 15, 2006Shane Mosley vs Fernando Vargas IIMosley wins by TKO in round 6HBO350,000[187]
Aug 12, 2006Hasim Rahman vs. Oleg Maskaev IIMaskaev wins by TKO in round 12HBO60,000[190]
Nov 4, 2006Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Carlos BaldomirMayweather Jr. wins by UD (120–108, 120–108, 118–110)HBO325,000[186]
Nov 18, 2006Manny Pacquiao vs Érik Morales IIIPacquiao wins by KO in round 3HBO350,000[186]
Apr 14, 2007Manny Pacquiao vs Jorge SolísPacquiao wins by KO in round 8Top Rank150,000[191]
May 5, 2007Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.Mayweather Jr. wins by SD (116–112, 115–113, 113–115)HBO2,400,000[60]
Oct 10, 2007Manny Pacquiao vs. Marco Antonio Barrera IIPacquiao wins by UD (118–109, 118–109, 115–112)HBO350,000[192]
Dec 8, 2007Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Ricky HattonMayweather Jr. wins by TKO in round 10HBO920,000[81]
Jan 19, 2008Félix Trinidad vs. Roy Jones Jr.Jones Jr. wins by UD (116-110, 117-109, 116-110)HBO500,000[193]
Feb 16, 2008Kelly Pavlik vs. Jermain Taylor IIPavlik wins by UD (115-113, 117-111, 116-112)HBO250,000[193]
Mar 15, 2008Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Márquez IIPacquiao wins by SD (115–112, 114–113, 112–115)HBO400,000[194]
Jun 28, 2008David Díaz vs. Manny PacquiaoPacquiao wins by TKO in round 9HBO206,000[195]
Jul 26, 2008Miguel Cotto vs. Antonio MargaritoMargarito wins by TKO in round 11HBO450,000[196]
Nov 8, 2008Joe Calzaghe vs. Roy Jones Jr.Calzaghe wins by UD (118–109, 118–109, 118–109)HBO225,000[196]
Dec 6, 2008Oscar De La Hoya vs. Manny PacquiaoPacquiao wins by RTD in round 8HBO1,250,000[60]
May 2, 2009Manny Pacquiao vs. Ricky HattonPacquiao wins by KO in round 2HBO850,000[79]
Sep 19, 2009Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Juan Manuel MárquezMayweather Jr. wins by UD (120–107, 119–108, 118–109)HBO1,060,000[81]
Nov 14, 2009Manny Pacquiao vs. Miguel CottoPacquiao wins by TKO in round 12HBO1,250,000[83]
Mar 13, 2010Manny Pacquiao vs. Joshua ClotteyPacquiao wins by UD (119–109, 119–109, 120–108)HBO700,000[197]
Apr 3, 2010Bernard Hopkins vs. Roy Jones Jr. IIHopkins win by UD (118–109, 117–110, 117–110)HBO150,000[198]
May 1, 2010Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Shane MosleyMayweather Jr. wins by UD (119–109, 118–110, 119–109)HBO1,400,000[60]
Nov 13, 2010Manny Pacquiao vs. Antonio MargaritoPacquiao wins by UD (120–108, 118–110, 119–109)HBO1,150,000[86]
May 7, 2011Manny Pacquiao vs. Shane MosleyPacquiao wins by UD (119–108, 120–108, 120–107)Showtime1,340,000[88]
Sep 17, 2011Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs Victor OrtizMayweather Jr. wins by KO in round 4HBO1,250,000[90]
Nov 13, 2011Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Márquez IIIPacquiao wins by MD (115–113, 114–114, 116–112)HBO1,400,000[92]
Dec 3, 2011Miguel Cotto vs. Antonio Margarito IICotto wins by RTD in round 9HBO600,000[199]
May 5, 2012Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Miguel CottoMayweather Jr. wins by UD (117–111, 117–111, 118–110)HBO1,500,000[94]
Jun 9, 2012Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy BradleyBradley wins by SD (115–113, 115–113, 115–113)HBO890,000[200]
Sep 15, 2012Sergio Martínez vs. Julio César Chávez Jr.Martínez wins by UD (118–109, 118–109, 117–110)HBO475,000[201]
Dec 8, 2012Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Márquez IVMárquez wins by KO in round 6HBO1,150,000[95]
May 4, 2013Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Robert GuerreroMayweather Jr. wins by UD (117–111, 117–111, 117–111)Showtime1,000,000[202]
Sep 14, 2013Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Canelo ÁlvarezMayweather Jr. wins by MD (117–111, 116–112, 114–114)Showtime2,200,000[97]
Oct 12, 2013Timothy Bradley vs. Juan Manuel MárquezBradley wins by SD (115–113, 116–112, 113–115)HBO375,000[203]
Nov 24, 2013Manny Pacquiao vs. Brandon RíosPacquiao wins by UD (119–109, 120–108, 118–110)HBO475,000[204]
Mar 8, 2014Canelo Álvarez vs. Alfredo AnguloÁlvarez wins by TKO in Round 10Showtime350,000[205]
Apr 12, 2014Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley IIPacquiao wins by UD (116–112, 116–112, 118–110)HBO800,000[206]
May 3, 2014Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Marcos MaidanaMayweather Jr. wins by MD (114–114, 117–111, 116–112)Showtime900,000[207]
Jun 7, 2014Miguel Cotto vs. Sergio MartínezCotto wins by RTD in round 10HBO315,000[208]
Jul 12, 2014Canelo Álvarez vs. Erislandy LaraÁlvarez wins by SD (115–113, 117–111, 113–115)Showtime300,000[209]
Sep 13, 2014Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Marcos Maidana IIMayweather Jr. wins by UD (116–111, 116–111, 115–112)Showtime925,000[207]
Nov 23, 2014Manny Pacquiao vs. Chris AlgieriPacquiao wins by UD (119–103, 119–103, 120–102)HBO400,000[210]
May 2, 2015Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny PacquiaoMayweather Jr. wins by UD (116–112, 116–112, 118–110)HBO/Showtime4,600,000[98]
Sep 12, 2015Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Andre BertoMayweather Jr. wins by UD (120–108, 118–110, 117–111)Showtime400,000[211]
Oct 17, 2015Gennady Golovkin vs. David LemieuxGolovkin wins by TKO in round 8HBO150,000[212]
Nov 21, 2015Miguel Cotto vs. Canelo ÁlvarezÁlvarez wins by UD (117–111, 119–109, 118–110)HBO900,000[213]
Apr 9, 2016Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley IIIPacquiao wins by UD (116–110, 116–110, 116–110)HBO400,000[214]
May 7, 2016Canelo Álvarez vs. Amir KhanÁlvarez wins by KO in round 6HBO600,000[215]
July 23, 2016Terence Crawford vs. Viktor PostolCrawford wins by UD (118–107, 118–107, 117–108)HBO55,000[216]
Sep 17, 2016Canelo Álvarez vs. Liam SmithÁlvarez wins by TKO in round 9HBO300,000[217]
Nov 5, 2016Manny Pacquiao vs. Jessie VargasPacquiao wins by UD (118–109, 118–109, 114–113)Top Rank300,000[218]
Nov 19, 2016Sergey Kovalev vs. Andre WardWard wins by UD (114–113, 114–113, 114–113)HBO165,000[219]
Mar 18, 2017Gennady Golovkin vs. Daniel JacobsGolovkin wins by UD (115–112, 115–112, 114–113)HBO170,000[220]
May 6, 2017Canelo Álvarez vs. Julio César Chávez Jr.Álvarez wins by UD (120–108, 120–108, 120–108)HBO1,000,000[221]
Jun 17, 2017Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev IIWard wins by TKO in round 8HBO130,000[222]
Aug 26, 2017Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregorMayweather Jr. wins by TKO in round 10Showtime4,300,000[223]
Sep 16, 2017Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady GolovkinSplit draw (118–110, 115–113, 114–114)HBO1,300,000[106]
Sep 15, 2018Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin IIÁlvarez wins by MD (115–113, 114–114, 115–113)HBO1,100,000[113]
Dec 1, 2018Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson FurySplit draw (115–111, 113–113, 112–114)Showtime325,000[224]
Jan 19, 2019Manny Pacquiao vs. Adrien BronerPacquiao wins by UD (117–111, 116–112, 116–112)Showtime400,000[225]
Mar 16, 2019Errol Spence Jr. vs. Mikey GarciaSpence Jr. wins by UD (120–107, 120–108, 120–108)Fox375,000[226]
Apr 20, 2019Terence Crawford vs. Amir KhanCrawford wins by TKO in round 6ESPN150,000[227]
Jul 20, 2019Manny Pacquiao vs. Keith ThurmanPacquiao wins by SD (115–112, 115–112, 113–114)Fox500,000[228]
Sep 28, 2019Errol Spence Jr. vs. Shawn PorterSpence wins by SD (116–111, 116–111, 112–115)Fox350,000[229]
Nov 23, 2019Deontay Wilder vs. Luis Ortiz IIWilder wins by KO in round 7Fox275,000[230]
Feb 22, 2020Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury IIFury wins by TKO in round 7ESPN/Fox1,200,000[231]
Sep 26, 2020Jermall Charlo vs. Sergiy DerevyanchenkoCharlo wins by UD (116-112, 118-110, 117-111)Showtime120,000[232]
Oct 31, 2020Gervonta Davis vs. Leo Santa CruzDavis wins by KO in round 6Showtime225,000[233]
Nov 28, 2020Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr.Split draw (76-76, 79-73, 76-80)Triller1,600,000[120]
Dec 5, 2020Errol Spence Jr. vs. Danny GarcíaSpence wins by US (117-111, 116-112, 116-112)Fox250,000[234]
Jun 10, 2021Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Logan PaulExhibition fight, no winner declaredShowtime1,000,000[235]
United Kingdom
Select boxing pay-per-view figures (mainly from Sky Box Office) between 1966 and 2018. Many of these figures are based on BARB weekly viewing data figures.[236]
   — Fights which held the UK PPV sales record
DateFightNetworkBuysSource(s)Announcers
21 May 1966Muhammad Ali vs. Henry Cooper IIPay TV40,000[237]
16 March 1996Frank Bruno vs. Mike Tyson IISky Box Office660,000[68]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
9 November 1996Naseem Hamed vs. Remigio MolinaSky Box Office420,000[68][238]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
8 February 1997Naseem Hamed vs. Tom JohnsonSky Box Office720,000[68][239]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
3 May 1997Naseem Hamed vs. Billy HardySky Box Office348,000[68][240]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
28 June 1997Evander Holyfield vs. Mike Tyson IISky Box Office550,000[70]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
13 March 1999Evander Holyfield vs. Lennox LewisSky Box Office400,000[241]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
29 January 2000Mike Tyson vs. Julius FrancisSky Box Office500,000[70]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
19 August 2000Naseem Hamed vs. Augie SanchezSky Box Office300,000[242]Adam Smith and Jim Watt
8 June 2002Lennox Lewis vs. Mike TysonSky Box Office750,000[74]Ian Darke and Glenn McCrory
8 December 2007Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Ricky HattonSky Box Office1,150,000[243]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
2 May 2009Manny Pacquiao vs. Ricky HattonSky Box Office900,000[80]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
18 July 2009Amir Khan vs. Andreas KotelnikSky Box Office100,000[244]Adam Smith and Jim Watt
7 November 2009Nikolai Valuev vs. David HayeSky Box Office469,000[245]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
3 April 2010David Haye vs. John RuizSky Box Office253,000[246][103]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
24 April 2010Carl Froch vs. Mikkel KesslerPrimetime50,000[247]John Rawling and Duke McKenzie
18 September 2010Kell Brook vs. Michael JenningsSky Box Office15,000[248]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
13 November 2010David Haye vs. Audley HarrisonSky Box Office304,000[245][103]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
11 December 2010Amir Khan vs. Marcos MaidanaSky Box Office164,000[249]Adam Smith and Jim Watt
16 April 2011Amir Khan vs. Paul McCloskeyPrimetime200,000[250][247]Benny Ricardo and Duke McKenzie
21 May 2011George Groves vs. James DeGaleSky Box Office43,000[251]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
2 July 2011Wladimir Klitschko vs. David HayeSky Box Office1,170,000[252][253]John Rawling and Jim Watt
25 May 2013Carl Froch vs. Mikkel Kessler IISky Box Office32,000[254]Ian Darke and Jim Watt
23 November 2013Carl Froch vs. George GrovesSky Box Office47,000[255]Nick Halling and Jim Watt
31 May 2014Carl Froch vs. George Groves IISky Box Office355,000[256]Nick Halling, Jim Watt and Paulie Malignaggi
2 May 2015Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny PacquiaoSky Box Office942,000[99][257]Nick Halling and Jim Watt
30 May 2015Kell Brook vs. Frankie GavinSky Box Office139,000[258]Nick Halling, Jim Watt and Paulie Malignaggi
28 November 2015Wladimir Klitschko vs. Tyson FurySky Box Office655,000[259][103]Adam Smith, Glenn McCrory and Carl Froch
12 December 2015Anthony Joshua vs. Dillian WhyteSky Box Office699,000[260][261]Nick Halling, Jim Watt and Paulie Malignaggi
27 February 2016Carl Frampton vs. Scott QuiggSky Box Office220,000[262][263]Nick Halling and Jim Watt
9 April 2016Anthony Joshua vs. Charles MartinSky Box Office1,368,000[260][264]Nick Halling and Glenn McCrory
25 June 2016Anthony Joshua vs. Dominic BreazealeSky Box Office617,000[265]Nick Halling, Jim Watt and David Haye
10 September 2016Gennady Golovkin vs. Kell BrookSky Box Office752,000[266][267]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Paulie Malignaggi
10 December 2016Anthony Joshua vs. Éric MolinaSky Box Office764,000[260][268]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and David Haye
4 February 2017Chris Eubank Jr. vs. Renold QuinlanITV Box Office86,000[269]Ronald McIntosh and Richie Woodhall
4 March 2017David Haye vs. Tony BellewSky Box Office1,515,000[270][103]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Paulie Malignaggi
29 April 2017Anthony Joshua vs. Wladimir KlitschkoSky Box Office1,542,000[102][103]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Deontay Wilder
27 May 2017Kell Brook vs. Errol Spence Jr.Sky Box Office405,000[271]Adam Smith and Carl Froch
26 August 2017Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregorSky Box Office1,007,000[272]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Dan Hardy
28 October 2017Anthony Joshua vs. Carlos TakamSky Box Office1,009,000[273]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Tony Bellew
31 March 2018Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph ParkerSky Box Office1,832,000[107][103]Adam Smith and Carl Froch
5 May 2018David Haye vs. Tony Bellew IISky Box Office1,048,000[274][103]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Paulie Malignaggi
28 July 2018Dillian Whyte vs. Joseph ParkerSky Box Office571,000[275][276]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Tony Bellew
22 September 2018Anthony Joshua vs. Alexander PovetkinSky Box Office1,247,000[114][103]Adam Smith, Carl Froch, Paulie Malignaggi and David Haye
10 November 2018Oleksandr Usyk vs. Tony BellewSky Box Office819,000[277]Adam Smith, Carl Froch, Paulie Malignaggi and David Haye
1 December 2018Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson FuryBT Sport Box Office450,000[278]John Rawling and Barry Jones
22 December 2018Dillian Whyte vs. Derek Chisora IISky Box Office532,000[279]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Anthony Joshua
1 June 2019Anthony Joshua vs. Andy Ruiz Jr.Sky Box Office652,000[280]Adam Smith, Paulie Malignaggi and Matthew Macklin
20 July 2019Dillian Whyte vs. Oscar RivasSky Box Office368,000[281]Adam Smith, Paulie Malignaggi and Matthew Macklin
31 August 2019Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Luke CampbellSky Box Office205,000[282]Adam Smith, Paulie Malignaggi and Matthew Macklin
26 October 2019Josh Taylor vs. Regis PrograisSky Box Office176,000[283]Adam Smith, Carl Froch and Matthew Macklin
9 November 2019KSI vs. Logan Paul IISky Box Office216,000[284]Adam Smith, Joe Weller, Behzinga and AnEsonGib
7 December 2019Andy Ruiz Jr. vs. Anthony Joshua IISky Box Office1,540,000[117][103]Adam Smith, Matthew Macklin and Tony Bellew
22 August 2020Dillian Whyte vs. Alexander PovetkinSky Box Office337,000[285]Adam Smith and Matthew Macklin
31 October 2020Oleksandr Usyk vs. Dereck ChisoraSky Box Office1,059,000[286][287][288]Adam Smith and Matthew Macklin
12 December 2020Anthony Joshua vs. Kubrat PulevSky Box Office948,000[289]Adam Smith and Matthew Macklin
27 March 2021Alexander Povetkin vs. Dillian Whyte IISky Box Office197,000[290][291]Adam Smith and Matthew Macklin
Mixed martial arts (MMA)
The first pay-per-view mixed martial arts bout was Muhammad Ali vs. Antonio Inoki, which took place in Japan on June 26, 1976. It sold at least 2 million buys on closed-circuit theatre TV.[292] At a ticket price of $10,[293] the fight grossed at least $20 million (inflation-adjusted $90 million) or more from closed-circuit theatre TV revenue in the United States.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC)
The highest buy rates for the UFC as of January 2021 are as follows.[294]
Note: The UFC does not release official PPV statistics, and the following PPV numbers are as reported by industry insiders. As of April 2019, all PPV's are iPPV's, with distribution on the internet exclusively via Disney and BAMTech's streaming service.
   — Fights which held the UFC PPV sales record
DateEventHeadlineBuy rateRevenue (est.)
Oct 6, 2018UFC 229Khabib vs. McGregor2,400,000[295]$180 million[296][297]
Aug 20, 2016UFC 202Diaz vs. McGregor 21,650,000[294]$90 million[298][299]
Jan 24, 2021UFC 257Poirier vs. McGregor 21,600,000[300]
Jul 11, 2009UFC 100Lesnar vs. Mir1,600,000[294]$82 million
Mar 5, 2016UFC 196McGregor vs. Diaz1,317,000[295]$80 million[301][299]
Jul 11, 2020UFC 251Usman vs. Masvidal1,300,000[302]$78 million[303]
Nov 12, 2016UFC 205Alvarez vs. McGregor1,300,000[295]$83 million[304][297]
Jul 9, 2016UFC 200Tate vs. Nunes1,200,000[294]$71 million[305][306]
Dec 12, 2015UFC 194Aldo vs. McGregor1,200,000[295]$80 million[307][299]
Jul 3, 2010UFC 116Lesnar vs. Carwin1,160,000[294]$55 million
Nov 15, 2015UFC 193Rousey vs. Holm1,100,000$60 million
Dec 30, 2016UFC 207Nunes vs. Rousey1,100,000[294]$60 million[308][309]
Dec 30, 2006UFC 66Liddell vs. Ortiz 21,050,000[294]$53 million
May 29, 2010UFC 114Rampage vs. Evans1,050,000[294]$51 million[310][311]
Oct 23, 2010UFC 121Lesnar vs. Velasquez1,050,000[294]$45 million
Dec 28, 2013UFC 168Weidman vs. Silva II1,025,000[294]$57 million[312][313]
Nov 15, 2008UFC 91Couture vs. Lesnar1,010,000[294]$47 million
Jan 18, 2020UFC 246McGregor vs. Cowboy1,000,000[314]$65 million[315]
Dec 27, 2008UFC 92Evans vs. Griffin1,000,000[294]$48 million[316][299]
Mar 16, 2013UFC 158St-Pierre vs. Diaz950,000[294]
Jul 7, 2012UFC 148Silva vs. Sonnen II925,000
Jan 31, 2009UFC 94St-Pierre vs. Penn 2920,000
Aug 1, 2015UFC 190Rousey vs. Correia900,000
Nov 4, 2017UFC 217Bisping vs. St-Pierre875,000
Jul 29, 2017UFC 214Cormier vs. Jones 2860,000
Aug 8, 2009UFC 101Declaration850,000
Jul 11, 2015UFC 189Mendes vs. McGregor825,000[317]
Mar 6, 2021UFC 259Błachowicz vs. Adesanya800,000[318]
Apr 30, 2011UFC 129St-Pierre vs. Shields800,000
Jan 3, 2015UFC 182Jones vs. Cormier800,000
Dec 11, 2010UFC 124St-Pierre vs. Koscheck 2785,000
Mar 27, 2010UFC 111St-Pierre vs. Hardy770,000
Dec 30, 2011UFC 141Lesnar vs. Overeem750,000
Feb 5, 2011UFC 126Silva vs. Belfort725,000
Dec 29, 2007UFC 79Nemesis700,000
Apr 21, 2012UFC 145Jones vs. Evans700,000
Nov 17, 2012UFC 154St. Pierre vs. Condit700,000
Dec 29, 2018UFC 232Jones vs. Gustafsson 2700,000
Apr 24, 2021UFC 261Usman vs. Masvidal 2700,000[319]
May 9, 2020UFC 249Ferguson vs. Gaethje700,000[320]
Sep 26, 2020UFC 253Adesanya vs. Costa700,000[321]
Oct 24, 2020UFC 254Khabib vs. Gaethje675,000[322]
May 26, 2007UFC 71Liddell vs. Jackson675,000
Professional wrestling (United States)
Further information: List of WWE pay-per-view and WWE Network events and List of NWA/WCW closed-circuit events and pay-per-view events
WrestleMania I in March 1985 sold over 1 million buys on closed-circuit theatre TV in the United States, making it the largest pay-per-view showing of a wrestling event in the US at the time.[323]
PPV home television
The highest buy rates for professional wrestling events on pay-per-view home television as of June 2015 are as follows.[324]
   — Fights which held the professional wrestling PPV sales record
No.DateEventBuy rate
1Apr 1, 2012WrestleMania XXVIII1,300,000[325]
2Apr 1, 2007WrestleMania 231,200,000
3Apr 3, 2005WrestleMania 211,085,000
4Apr 3, 2011WrestleMania XXVII1,059,000
5Mar 30, 2008WrestleMania XXIV1,058,000
6Apr 7, 2013WrestleMania 291,048,000
7Apr 1, 2001WrestleMania X-Seven1,040,000
8Mar 14, 2004WrestleMania XX1,007,000
9Apr 2, 2006WrestleMania 22975,000
10Apr 5, 2009WrestleMania XXV960,000
11Mar 28, 2010WrestleMania XXVI885,000
12Mar 17, 2002WrestleMania X8880,000
13Apr 2, 2000WrestleMania 2000824,000
14Mar 28, 1999WrestleMania XV800,000
15Jul 22, 2001WWF Invasion770,000
16Apr 2, 1989WrestleMania V767,000
17Mar 24, 1991WrestleMania VII764,000[326][327]
List of sportsmen with highest pay-per-view sales
This tables lists the sportsmen who have had the highest pay-per-view sales, with at least 10 million buys. It includes sportsmen who have participated in combat sports such as boxing and mixed martial arts as well as sports entertainment such as professional wrestling.
SportsmanTotal sales (est.)Closed-circuit theatre TVPPV home televisionYearsSport(s)
Muhammad Ali162,944,000162,154,000[b]790,000[b]1963–1985Professional boxing
Mixed martial arts
Professional wrestling
Joe Frazier100,500,000100,000,000[6]500,000[14]1965–1981Professional boxing
George Foreman52,000,00050,000,000[5]2,000,000[60][162]1974–1993
Floyd Mayweather Jr.29,090,000223,000[76][100]28,867,000[328][c]2005–2017Professional boxing
Professional wrestling
Manny Pacquiao22,214,000173,000[100]22,041,000[d]2005–2019Professional boxing
Mike Tyson20,700,000920,000[e]19,780,000[e]1988–2020Professional boxing
Professional wrestling
Triple H20,329,000N/A20,329,000[f]1995–2019Professional wrestling
Conor McGregor16,599,000N/A16,599,000[g]2008–2021Mixed martial arts
Professional boxing
John Cena15,389,000N/A15,389,000[f]2002–2018Professional wrestling
The Rock14,859,000N/A14,859,000[h]1998–2013Professional wrestling
The Undertaker14,451,000N/A14,451,000[f]1990–2020
Oscar De La Hoya14,140,00050,000[76]14,090,000[i]1995–2008Professional boxing
Brock Lesnar12,771,000N/A12,771,000[j]2002–2020Professional wrestling
Mixed martial arts
Evander Holyfield12,720,000120,000[71]12,600,000[329]1984–2003Professional boxing
Anthony Joshua12,129,000N/A12,129,000[k]2015–2020Professional boxing
Shawn Michaels10,160,000N/A10,160,000[f]1988–2018Professional wrestling
See also
Notes
  1. ^ See Manny Pacquiao vs. Ricky Hatton § Pay-per-view.
  2. ^ a b See Boxing career of Muhammad Ali § Pay-per-view bouts.
  3. ^ See Floyd Mayweather Jr. § Pay-per-view bouts.
  4. ^ See Boxing career of Manny Pacquiao § Pay-per-view bouts.
  5. ^ a b See Mike Tyson § Pay-per-view bouts.
  6. ^ a b c d See "List of WWE pay-per-view events".
  7. ^ See Conor McGregor § UFC pay-per-view bouts.
  8. ^ See "Dwayne Johnson".
  9. ^ See Oscar De La Hoya § Pay-per-view bouts.
  10. ^ See Brock Lesnar § Pay-per-view bouts.
  11. ^ See Anthony Joshua § UK pay-per-view bouts.
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External links
Capsule history at sports 2/etv/P/htmlP/payperview/payperview.htm Museum of Broadcast Communications​[​permanent dead link]
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