Let the bidding begin. The blockbuster fight of 2007 figures to be Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr., scheduled for next Cinco de Mayo. De La Hoya's Golden Boy Productions will handle the promotion chores, with De La Hoya reportedly to receive $25 million and Mayweather about $12 million.
In an article in today's Las Vegas Review-Journal, Kevin Iole writes that "The bout, signed on Monday, has the potential to be the largest-grossing fight in history. Richard Schaefer, the CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, said the goal is for it to become the first bout ever to sell 2 million pay-per-view units."
Schaefer says that he "already has deals in place with Tecate Beer, Bacardi and Southwest Airlines, and he said those companies will produce unprecedented fight-related marketing. In addition, he said he hopes to close sponsorship deals with Cingular, Sony, Rock Star Energy Drinks and Coca-Cola."
Is this the usual mega-hype surrounding De La Hoya's fights? Absolutely, but with boxing being eclipsed by Ultimate Fighting events and with boxing's heavyweight champs toiling in anonymity, De La Hoya-Mayweather provides a compelling match-up between two excellent fighters. At least on paper.
One key question remains: where will the fight take place? L.A.'s Staples Center and Las Vegas' MGM Grand are the two sites mentioned in published media reports, with most boxing pundits betting on the Vegas casino to carry the day with an enormous site fee.
The Cinco de Mayo bout between Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr. will be a blockbuster.