If you don’t know how much money Floyd Mayweather has in the bank, don’t worry—he’ll be more than glad to tell you.
The 36-year-old boxer, who will enter the ring for the first time in almost a year on Saturday versus Robert Guerrero, is unquestionably one of the richest men in sports. His reported net worth is $115 million, which puts him in an echelon that includes Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter.
But what sets Mayweather apart from the more reserved Jeters of the world is that he’s not afraid to flaunt his jet-setting extravagance.
Buzzfeed’s Nicholas Schwartz noted in December that Mayweather bet over $5 million last year alone—and that was only his confirmed totals. There have been rumors that he bet $1.8 million that the Los Angeles Clippers would defeat the Memphis Grizzlies during Game 1 of their Western Conference playoff series in 2012:
It’s also been rumored that Mayweather bought his fiancé, Shantel Jackson, a $16 million necklace last Christmas. Even if the rumor is a little far-fetched (as most are), we do know that Mayweather has been quite open about his own jaw-dropping jewelry collection.
And let’s not forget this moment, which will forever go down as the moment humankind’s jealousy meter hit new heights:
We’re not in the habit of confirming or denying—or, frankly, even caring all that much—about how much money Mayweather has or how he’s spending it. But it’s clear that he’s not simply an undefeated savant in the boxing ring; Mayweather’s financial portfolio is equally impressive.
What’s arguably most impressive about Mayweather is the way the superstar boxer makes his money.
Unlike most athletes, Mayweather didn’t make some of his fortune on his particular field of play. He made almost all of it there.
That’s not to say pugilism is a more noble profession than any other athletic endeavor. It’s all just that Mayweather has mastered the art of self-promotion—to the tune of making $85 million in a 12-month period measured by Forbes last year.
What’s semi-shocking is that Mayweather made the robust sum of $0.00 in endorsements over the year-long period. Yes, you read that right. He made zip. Zero. Zilch. There was no Gatorade endorsement, Nike shoe deal or anything of the sort—least as a typical endorsement.
Juxtapose that with other prominent athletes. Tiger Woods was Forbes’ third-highest-paid athlete after raking in $59.4 million in that time frame; only $4.4 million came on the links. LeBron James, No. 4 on the list at $53 million, made $40 million of that off the hardwood.
It’s a near-universal truth of the sports world: You make yourself marketable by being a great athlete; only Daddy Megabucks at Corporation X is willing to shell out what you’re truly worth.
And perhaps it’s a bit of a condemnation on both boxing and Mayweather—by far the sport’s most recognizable face—that he can’t get a few bucks thrown his way in endorsements. It’s true that Mayweather does cut deals for promotion of his fights, but even rival Manny Pacquiao was cut a check for $6 million in endorsements, per Forbes.
Instead, Mayweather’s world-conquering money grab is among the most captivating in sports.
It’s almost Kardashian-esque, but Floyd Mayweather makes money simply by being Floyd Mayweather. Yes, he’s the greatest boxer alive. But when you hit the “purchase” button on the $69.99 cost of Saturday night’s fight, you’re paying for everything that encapsulates Mayweather. Mainstream fans are paying for the spectacle—they only hope a good boxing match comes along with it.
Until he inked his landmark deal with Showtime, Mayweather was the ruler of HBO—unless you’re particularly partial to Joffrey. Though the network has run 24/7 with other athletes and boxers, the specials with Mayweather became synonymous with the brand and served as huge promotional vehicles for his fights.
With Showtime, Mayweather’s dominance of pay-cable continues. He’s taken up another starring role in the network’s All Access program in the lead-up to Saturday’s fight and been the subject of two documentary programs, 30 Days In May and Mayweather, the latter airing last week on CBS.
All of these things only stand to expand his Scrooge McDuck money pit.
In the press release issued with the announcement of the deal, Mayweather’s deal was described as being “by far” the largest in boxing’s history. There’s no official total or guaranteed salary that came with the announcement—terms were “contractually confidential—but Forbes’ Kurt Badenhausen estimated the six-fight agreement is likely worth $200 million guaranteed, with an extra $50 million depending on pay-per-view buys.
To put it mildly, Mayweather isn’t going broke anytime soon. In typical Mayweather fashion, it was perhaps he who put the situation best:
Money don't make me, I make money - Floyd Mayweather— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) November 27, 2012
And if Saturday goes well enough, that statement will only get truer over the next two years.