The entire world was shaken by the COVID-19 pandemic and it forever changed the way we live and enjoy life.
The sporting world has suffered, and the excitement of attending a live boxing match or sports game is no longer feasible at this time for fear of the contagious Coronavirus spreading like wildfire.
The UFC and Boxing have put on fights inside of a bubble, with no fans and everyone gets tested for the virus and even though they were able to put fights on during this time, it’s not the same without a live audience in the arena.
The roar of the crowd and the excitement is no longer there, a lot of the fights look like gym wars or smokers.
Big name boxers like Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao, Anthony Joshua and Canelo Alvarez rely on legions of fans attending their fights live as well as Pay-Per-View and endorsement deals.
Without a sold out crowd at the arenas, these boxing stars who are used to commanding a hefty sum of money will have to take a paycut since they will be missing out on the millions in live gate money from tickets sold.
Fighters with large fanbases who travel to watch them fight will hurt the most from the COVID regulations and restrictions.
Older fighters like WBA welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao who are in their 40’s could age over night with the long layoff and it could show up when they do fight again.
Pacquiao for example hasn’t fought in over a year and if he does fight in 2021 he will be 42 and it will be the longest lay off of his career. Pacquiao insisted on a live audience for his next fight and tried to negotiate a deal with Bob Arum to fight WBO champion Terence Crawford in the Middle East but the athletic commission refused because of COVID-19 so that fight never happened over the summer.
Anthony Joshua and Canelo Alvarez both have fights coming up. They will be under strict testing and rules as well, but will have a limited amount of fans in attendance.
Unified WBO, IBF, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua who faces Kubrat Pulev in London on December 12th will have 1000 fans in attendance under strict social distanced and mask wearing guidelines.
The tickets for Joshua vs. Pulev will be priced at at £100, £200, £300, £500, and £1,000 and won’t really bring much revenue to the event but the limited attendance is still better than none at all.
Mexican superstar Canelo Alvarez who is free from his promotional contract with Golden Boy promotions will take on undefeated WBA super middleweight champion Callum Smith at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas on December 16th with limited audience in attendance as well.
Unless a vaccine is approved soon, fighters will need to rely on big Pay-Per-View sales to make up for the loss in live gate and merchandising, and will have to take a reasonable paycut during these trying times.