Reliving De La Hoya vs. Mayweather

De La Hoya vs. Mayweather

It was the fight that gave the world the 24/7 franchise. It was the fight that proved that boxing, whilst a heavy sleeper at times was by no means dead. It was also the fight that served as a passing of the torch from one PPV King to the next. Matt Hamilton looks back at “De La Hoya-Mayweather: The World Awaits”.

De La Hoya Mayweather 2007

De La Hoya vs. Mayweather: The World Awaits

• Tickets sold out three hours after they went on sale on January 27, 2007. The fight generated over $19 million in live gate takings alone.

• The De La Hoya-Mayweather bout set the record for most PPV buys in boxing history with 2.4 million households.

• $120 million in revenue was generated by the PPV.

• Oscar De La Hoya ended up earning $52 million, the highest purse ever for a fighter.

• Floyd Mayweather made $25 million.

The Undercard:

• Rocky Juarez defeats Jose Andres Hernandez via unanimous decision

• Rey Bautista defeats Sergio Manuel Medina via unanimous decision

• Ernest Johnson had a draw with Wes Ferguson in the sixth round.

• AJ Banal defeats Juan Alberto Rosas via unanimous decision.

• Christian Solano KOs John O’Donnell in the second round.

• Billy Dib defeats Jose Alberto Gonzalez by unanimous decision.

• John Murray KOs Lorenzo Bethea in the seventh round.

• Carlos Duarte KOs Calvin Rooks in the second round.

• Jonathan Arabaca defeats Pheng Her via split decision.

Floyd Mayweather Senior:

Mayweather Sr. had been De La Hoya’s trainer since 2001. Mayweather Sr. announced his willingness to train De La Hoya after at first declining to oppose his son, but demanded a $2 million fee in light of the enormous revenue to be generated by the fight. De La Hoya declined Mayweather Sr.’s demands, making a counteroffer of $500,000 guaranteed plus an additional $500,000 contingent on De La Hoya winning the fight. The sides were unable to come to an agreement and De La Hoya hired trainer Freddie Roach to be his corner man instead.

USAToday quoted Mayweather Senior as saying, “If Oscar doesn’t use me, it won’t be because I’m not a great trainer. What I’m asking for is nowhere near what he’s going to make. There’s too much money for me to take chits and bits.”

Mainstream Media Interest:

“So boxing is back, at least for a night. The fight will be shown in a record 176 countries and may become the most watched pay-per-view matchup ever. “This could be the night that saves boxing,” says Richard Schaefer, CEO of De La Hoya’s company, Golden Boy Promotions.”

TIME Magazine

 

The Fight:

The fight itself failed to deliver the fireworks many had hoped for and was perhaps best described as anti-climactic as Mayweather’s superior speed and endurance wore down De La Hoya and allowed him to coast to a fairly comfortable (to most observers) decision victory. The judges though saw the fight a great deal closer & Mayweather lost on a single judges scorecard for the first time in his career; whilst winning the fight on a split decision.

Mayweather Defense

De La Hoya managed to land only 122 shots in total or 21% of the time.

Judges Jerry Roth (115-113) and Chuck Giampa (116-112) scored the fight for Mayweather while judge Tom Kaczmarek had De La Hoya winning, 115-113. Compubox noted that Oscar landed 122 of 587 total shots whilst Mayweather managed to hit the target 207 times from 481 attempts (43%).

“De La Hoya vs. Mayweather was a record-setting event from the moment the fight was announced,” said Ross Greenburg, president HBO Sports. “We are delighted that sports fans recognized the greatness of these two future Hall of Famers and tuned in for their showdown. It’s satisfying to see that boxing still connects with sports fans…”

Though from a less biased observer one would probably have got the impression that boxing had once more wasted a glorious opportunity to re-establish itself within the cultural mainstream due to a combination of a drab contest and over-extended expectations from just one fight with a somewhat inevitable outcome.

That it was an event of some magnitude and significance in the history of the sport, though, is beyond debate.

What are your memories of this bout, its build up & aftermath ESNews Nation?