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After being billed as one of the biggest fights of the year, Gervonta Davis vs. Ryan Garcia appears to have lived up to the mantle. According to Sports Business Journal, the event drew more than 1.2 million buys on pay-per-view over the weekend.
Described as a commercial success, Davis vs. Garcia also generated a live gate of $22.8 million from a crowd of 20,842 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Davis vs. Garcia scores big on PPV
Davis prevailed in his fight last weekend, dropping Garcia in the seventh round with a left hook to the body. This concluded a largely dominant fight for ‘Tank’, slowing down Garcia in the second round with a knockdown and then commanding the fight up until the finish.
Many have highlighted how the 12-round fight between Davis and Garcia received a large amount of attention despite not having any championship belts involved. This is due to the massive amount of success and popularity that both fighters have received on their way to this fight.
Davis currently has over five million followers on Instagram. Matching his social media presence was his fan-friendly fighting style, entering the ring recently with an undefeated record of 28 wins with 26 finishes. He came into his fight last weekend after scoring finish victories over Rolando Romero and Hector Garcia over the past year.
When Garcia made the ring walk last weekend, his record was a flawless 23 wins and no losses. He has an even bigger presence online than “Tank” Davis, currently holding over 10 million Instagram followers. Garcia was coming off a longer layoff than Davis, with his previous fight before last weekend being a finish against Javier Fortuna in July 2022.
This mix of in-ring success and social media popularity looks like it was the perfect storm for a strong live gate and PPV figure. Billed as “It Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This,” many praised the event as a show that, in a time where promoters and boxers are very protective of their in-ring reputations, proved everyone was able to come together and make a big bout happen.
Davis, Garcia set to make bank
The reported numbers for Davis vs. Garcia are some of the biggest seen in years. Bloody Elbow’s John S. Nash described Davis vs. Garcia as the most successful U.S. boxing event since the 2018 rematch between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin, which reportedly sold 1.1 million buys on PPV.
Both Garcia and Davis are set to benefit greatly from their hit fight. The Sports Business Journal report expects that each talent will receive a “low eight-figure payout,” with Davis earning more due to getting a bigger portion of the profit split.
Davis has fought on pay-per-view many times before, although none have come close to the commercial success that last weekend’s show did. Broadcast through Showtime, the same service that carried the recent super-fight, most of Davis’ previous PPV appearances have received around 200,000 buys each.
Last weekend was also the first time that Garcia or Davis had competed in Las Vegas in their pro boxing careers. Their previous fights as pro boxers took place in different markets like New York, Texas, California, or Davis’ home state of Maryland.
After his win on Saturday, Davis said he was the face of boxing. A statement like that is certainly subjective and could provide a different answer based on who you ask or what criteria are at play. But the figures coming out of Saturday’s event might prove that Davis was right in his claim.
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