Bout draws more than 1.3 million buys
Pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao's lopsided decision victory against Shane Mosley on May 7 generated more than 1.3 million pay-per-view buys -- Pacquiao's best box office performance yet -- Top Rank promoter Bob Arum told ESPN.com.
Pacquiao's previous best pay-per-view total was the 1.25 million generated by his eighth-round knockout of Oscar De La Hoya in a big upset in December 2008. Four of Pacquiao's last six fights -- Mosley, De La Hoya, Antonio Margarito and Miguel Cotto -- have topped 1 million buys.
The total was the second-best pay-per-view performance for Mosley, whose lopsided loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in May 2010 sold 1.4 million units.
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Arum said Pacquiao-Mosley generated more than $75 million in television revenue with about 700,000 buys coming via cable systems and about 600,000 coming from satellite services.
Pacquiao retained his title in the fight, which took place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and generated a live gate of $8,882,600, the 14th-highest gross in Nevada history from 15,422 tickets sold.
All of Pacquiao's and Mosley's previous significant pay-per-view fights had been handled by HBO PPV. However, Arum made a deal for this fight with Showtime PPV in exchange for wide exposure of the bout on sister network CBS.
The reason Arum gave for the lag in getting pay-per-view numbers and for why he is unsure of more precise totals is because Showtime, largely out of the pay-per-view business in recent years, does not have the kind of database and expertise to extrapolate numbers like HBO does.
"We know we have a little over 1.3 million," Arum said. "What we don't have are some of the smaller cable systems. What I'm saying is I know we go to the bank counting a little over a 1.3 million. I know we'll go up from there. How much up, I have no experience in this. This was all done for us in the past by HBO, which had experience, charts and all kinds of data from past fights to compare the fight to. Showtime can't do it because they haven't done this in so long. They don't have the database that you need, but I'm feeling very, very happy because I know I've done at least 1.3 million.
"How far over we are remains to be seen, and I have no way to make a prediction. Obviously, on the outstanding systems we did something. So that will determine how much above 1.3 million. But I don't think we have enough outstanding numbers to say we will be over 1.4 million, so I think we will wind up somewhere between 1.3 and 1.4 million."
Pacquiao is next scheduled to fight Nov. 12 against rival Juan Manuel Marquez, against whom he is 1-0-1 in two controversial decisions, at the MGM Grand. Marquez has to first win a July 16 tune-up bout.
Which network will be awarded the rights to Pacquiao-Marquez III has not been determined, Arum said.
"We're on the clock and we're discussing it with of them now, how we're going to do it and which network we're going to do it with," he said.
Arum said Showtime had the right of first negotiation based on the deal for Pacquiao-Mosley.
"We worked out how we would do that first negotiation and everybody is happy with the procedure," Arum said. "But we are also discussing it with HBO."
Arum said he was in no rush to make a decision. The national media tour to promote Pacquiao-Marquez III won't begin until late August, so there is time for Arum to make a deal.
"I've got more than a whole month to get that done, so we're not going to agonize," Arum said.
Dan Rafael is the boxing writer for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter @danrafaelespn.
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