By: Hans Themistode
The numbers aren’t exactly what they seem.
From the outside looking in, it would appear that in terms of Pay-Per-View buys, unified welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. is a much larger attraction then WBO belt holder Terence Crawford.
In totality, Spence Jr. has done three PPV events. The first came in March of 2019 against Mikey Garcia which totaled over 360,000 buys. The second came six months later, this time against Shawn Porter. Their event reportedly brought in more than 300,000 buys on the night. Most recently, Spence Jr. returned to the PPV platform just a few weeks ago and generated over 250,000 buys for his one-sided victory against Danny Garcia.
Crawford on the other hand, produced 50,000-60,000 buys for his 2016 unanimous decision win over Viktor Postol. He also raked in roughly 150,000 buys for his sixth-round knockout win over Amir Khan in 2019.
While both Crawford PPV events combined, have failed to equal Spence Jr.’s lowest PPV numbers on its own, promoter Bob Arum says that the numbers don’t tell the full story.
“Look at the real numbers. Look at how much each fighter has cost Al (Haymon). They need each other to be a draw.”
Arum’s need to back his fighter stems from Spence Jr.’s insistence that he receive the lion’s share of the money should they meet in the ring.
“I’m the big dog of the welterweight division,” said Spence Jr. to Chris Mannix during a recent interview. “He (Terence Crawford) got to take a backseat and take that 60/40 or 70/30 or whatever we give him.”
Spence Jr.’s comments, of course, drew the ire of Crawford as he revealed that he was no longer interested in facing Spence Jr. if he would be forced to take what Spence Jr. described as a “backseat,” during negotiations.
While the unified welterweight titlist has seemingly solidified himself as a PPV attraction, Arum is under the belief that he is far from that.
“Manny (Pacquiao) was a draw, Canelo (Alvarez) is a draw, Mayweather was a draw. Spence is not a draw no matter who he fights. Unless he and Crawford fight each other.”