By Nick Giongco
As he was boarding the Manila-bound Philippine Airlines flight from LAX on late Wednesday morning (early Thursday in the Philippines), Manny Pacquiao received a piece of good news.
Based on the 400,000 pay-per-view subscriptions generated by his World Boxing Association (WBA) welterweight title defense against Adrien Broner over the weekend in Las Vegas, Pacquiao remains a force to be reckoned with in paid viewership.
Reports from multiple sources from the US said the Pacquao-Broner match at the MGM Grand had bigger numbers compared with the epic world heavyweight title clash between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury last December in Los Angeles.
The Wilder-Fury show at Staples Center drew 325,000 buys.
Pacquiao was set to arrive in Manila early Thursday night accompanied by wife Jinkee and son Israel and members of the 40-year-old fighter’s inner circle.
On paper, Pacquiao was guaranteed $10 million for the Broner defense although industry sources say he is likely to pocket $20 million when everything gets accounted for.
Pacquiao also has cuts in the TV rights and other revenue-generating deals.
With Pacquiao proving to be a fan favorite, the clamor for him and Floyd Mayweather to figure in a rematch should snowball in the coming week and months.
However, Mayweather, through Leonard Ellerbe, head of Mayweather Promotions, insist the soon-to-be-41-year-old remains retired and is busy enjoying the perks of his being a ring star of the highest order.
Still, fight fans refuse to believe that Mayweather will stay retired that long since they have been meeting in strange regularity the past few weeks.
In their May 2015 megabuck matchup, Mayweather came out the winner on points and Pacquiao revealed later that he fought with an injured left shoulder.
That showdown had a whopping 4.6 million subscriptions and earned more than $600 million.
Many of Pacquiao’s appearances in Las Vegas breached the million mark in PPV buys, making him as the second biggest draw in boxing.
Since September 2018, Pacquiao and Mayweather have met four times, the last during the Los Angeles Lakers’ home game against the defending champion Golden State Warriors last Monday.