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Biggest boxing PPVs of all time
The Manny Pacquiao vs. Antonio Margarito fight is finally upon us. There has been a ton of hype leading up to this HBO pay-per-view contest, and it's going to be hard for the bout to live up to its expectations. In fact, it's more likely that we see a fairly dull showing, ala Pacquiao vs. Clottey, then we see a sensational, back and forth battle along the lines of Pacquiao vs. Marquez I.
But, we'll have to wait until the Pacquiao vs. Margarito results come in before we make that judgment and see how the two fighters fared against one another. In the meantime, here's a look at the top 5 boxing PPVs of all-time according to their official PPV buy rates. Did the other biggest boxing PPVs ever live up to their hype?
1. Floyd Mayweather vs. Oscar De La Hoya - May 5, 2007 - 2.4 million buys
The biggest boxing PPV of all-time is the Mayweather vs. De La Hoya contest from 2007. This was the fight where Mayweather really broke into the mainstream, and it was one of Oscar's last hurrahs at being a major player as a professional boxer rather than a promoter. The fight was a decent one, although it was impossible for it to live up to the massive expectations that were levied upon it. Mayweather won a Split Decision, but the fight should have been a fairly comfortable Unanimous Decision for the fighter, who controlled much of the pace after a strong early showing by De La Hoya.
2. Mike Tyson vs. Evander Holyfield II - June 28, 1997 - 1.99 million buys
This was the Tyson vs. Holyfield rematch, and few fighters have ever captured the public's interest the way that Mike Tyson did. This fight certainly didn't disappoint, not at least from that curious, can't-miss what Tyson might do, angle. This was the infamous ear-biting fight, where Tyson took a chunk out of Holyfield's ear during the contest. The fight therefore was terrible, being stopped in the third round on a DQ, but the scene itself was unforgettable.
3. Tyson vs. Lennox Lewis - June 8, 2002 - 1.97 million buys
This was the heavyweight contest between the champion that was, Lennox Lewis, and the guy that everyone always thought could be champion again if he got his act together, Mike Tyson. In truth, Tyson demolished mediocre opposition the buildup to this contest, and was going up against a fighter in Lewis that was not only much closer to his prime, but had about 7 inches of height on him, and a staggering 14 inches in reach. Putting your Tyson-fandom aside, the results were predictable, a Lewis domination leading to an 8th round KO win.
4. Tyson vs. Holyfield I - November 9, 1996 - 1.59 million buys
The long-awaited match-up between Iron Mike and Real Deal Holyfield. It should have happened years before, but that whole being tossed into prison thing really messed up those plans. Holyfield had lost two of his last four bouts leading up to the Tyson showdown, whereas Mike had just recaptured a portion of the heavyweight crown. Time for a vintage Tyson KO, right? Not so much. Holyfield bullied the bully, took the fight out of Tyson, and wore him down en route to an 11th round TKO win.
5. Tyson vs. Peter McNeeley - August 19th, 1995 - 1.55 million buys
Here we go again, Mike Tyson in another big bout… against Peter McNeeley?! This was Tyson's first fight since being released from prison, and he hadn't been in the ring in over four years. The level of intrigue and spectacle was absolutely massive for the encounter. The fight, well, that depends on what you wanted to see. Tyson knocked him down twice in the first half of the first round, after which McNeeley was disqualified for having his manager Vinnie Vecchione step into the ring.
The Next 5 Biggest Boxing PPVs
In order to give some attention to bouts that didn't include Mike Tyson, here are the next 5 biggest boxing PPVs after the first 5:
-De La Hoya vs. Trinidad - 1.4 million buys
-Mayweather vs. Mosley - 1.4 million buys
-Holyfield vs. Foreman - 1.4 million buys
-Tyson vs. Bruno - 1.37 million buys
-Pacquiao vs. De La Hoya - 1.25 million buys
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