For those of you looking for fewer pay-per-views in boxing, FOX is here to prepare you and remind you that isn’t the case.
Keith Idec of Boxingscene.com caught up with Bill Wanger, FOX Sports’ executive vice president of programming, live operations and research and he laid out the details that they will continue the pace of pay-per-views over the next three years of the deal they have to broadcast boxing from Premier Boxing Champions.
“Within our deal, we have four to five pay-per-views a year,” said Wanger to Boxingscene, whose network announced a four-year deal with PBC in September 2018. “We understand that every fight can’t be a pay-per-view-level fight. That’s why we have 12 fights [per year] on FS1. That’s why we have 10 fights [per year] on FOX broadcasting, which are free. And that’s more than there’s ever been in boxing in a long, long time.
What was your favorite moment from the #SpencePorter PPV this past weekend?
— FOX Sports: PBC (@PBConFOX) October 2, 2019
In a perfect world, all of the fights will be of pay-per-view quality over the air on free broadcast television like it was when my parents were growing up and in the swing of the 70s and 80s. The world isn’t perfect however and there will always be more money crested by the revenue of pay-per-views for everyone involved, most importantly the fighters.
Errol Spence and Shawn Porter in their bout earned a fight purse of 2 million dollars apiece. They both are expected to earn more than alone based on their welterweight title unification fight Saturday night through bonuses and percentages of the pay-per-view revenue.
“So, our goal with this whole PBC deal is to bring great fights back to free, over-the-air television and basic cable television, in a maximum number of homes, “Wanger said. “And yes, there’s gonna be four to five pay-per-views a year, when there are special fights, like [Spence-Porter] and [Wilder-Ortiz].”
While the numbers aren’t official on how many buys Spence-Porter did last weekend, multiple reports range from Bob Arum saying it did under 200,000 to Mike Coppinger stating earlier in the week around 300,000. Whatever number it did, people were watching and Wanger’s interview confirms it definitely isn’t going anywhere.
The next one for Fox is the one they bid on for November 23 which is the rematch between WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and Luis Ortiz.
“I think it’ll completely resonate [on pay-per-view],” Wanger said of their November 23 bout at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. “It’ll be a great rematch. I think we’ll have all of our promotional power in the fall leading up to the fight, in football and postseason baseball and college football. So, we’ll drum up some good business for this fight.”
Fox is dedicated to promoting the fights as Spence and Porter where on almost every program the Fox Sports cluster had leading up to the fight. Expect more of the same with Wilder and Ortiz.
Just be prepared to pay for it on fight night as the pay-per-views will keep coming.