Floyd "Money" Mayweather is unquestionably the biggest draw in boxing, and he will be rewarded handsomely for that fact when he takes on Marcos "El Chino" Maidana Saturday night in Las Vegas.
According to David Mayo of MLive.com, Mayweather is guaranteed a minimum of $32 million for simply showing up at MGM Grand Garden Arena for the welterweight championship unification bout, while his opponent will make $1.5 million.
Although the $32 million is well short of the record $41.5 million Mayweather earned for his clash with Saul "Canelo" Alvarez this past September, Mayo reports that his purse for Saturday's tilt is tied for the second highest of all time. Mayweather earned the same amount against both Miguel Cotto and Robert Guerrero.
That may just be the tip of the iceberg for Mayweather, though, since the $32 million guaranteed doesn't even factor in his pay-per-view share. With Mayweather, Amir Khan and Adrien Broner all on the same card, it stands to reason that the buy rate will be quite impressive.
It isn't particularly surprising that Maidana's purse is dwarfed by Mayweather's, but $1.5 million is a bit lower than some might have expected.
Steve Kim of MaxBoxing.com is among those who figured that Maidana would at least crack the $2 million mark:
Most Mayweather opponents get around $2-3 million, I have a hard time believing Maidana settled for anything under that.... #boxing— Steve Kim (@stevemaxboxing) April 30, 2014
As it turns out, Maidana's financial situation is somewhat complicated. According to Phil D. Jay of WorldBoxingNews.net, there was a judge's order in place that would have prevented Maidana from collecting his check for the Mayweather fight.
The order stemmed from Maidana's former trainer, Guillermo Serra, claiming that he was entitled to a portion of Maidana's earnings through 2016.
Per Maidana's manager, Sebastian Contursi, Serra decided against pursuing the issue any further, via Jay:
It seems that the people who requested Maidana's purse to be withheld have changed their minds for now after learning what legal processes they must go through, so I guess we have not been officially notified of any international order to keep the purse.
Our lawyers in Argentina will counter these claims anyway because these people have generated damage to Maidana with false accusations, but the good thing is they were not able to distract Marcos at all as we knew all along they were trying to do something that was simply wrong.
Luckily, Maidana was able to dodge that bullet, but it seems as though he may have to continue dealing with legal issues moving forward. Like Mayweather, though, his purse should be considerably larger than the guaranteed money based on the pay-per-view's success.
Strictly from a guaranteed perspective, Maidana will earn the same amount as Khan, despite the fact that Khan isn't part of the main event, per FightNights.com:
Main Event and Co-Main Event purses: Floyd Mayweather: $32 million Marcos Maidana: $1.5 million Amir Khan: $1.5 million Luis Collazo: $300k— FightNights.com™ (@boxing) April 30, 2014
Khan has name recognition, so it is understandable why he is getting a good chunk of change in his own right, but the Mayweather factor is usually a much bigger deal for the opponent.
Does Maidana deserve a bigger guaranteed purse?
Mayweather is the money man in this equation, though, and it is likely that everyone else on the card is grateful to get some of the trickle down from his drawing power.
While Maidana is a talented fighter with an impressive resume that includes a recent win over Broner, he isn't exactly a household name. Despite that, Mayweather still managed to pull in one of the largest guaranteed purses ever.
That speaks to how big of a brand Mayweather has created for himself in boxing. His opponent matters to a certain degree, but Mayweather generates buzz no matter his opponent.
All eyes will be on MGM Grand Garden Arena Saturday night, and even though Mayweather already has $32 million in the bank, there is little doubt he will put on a great show for the fans.
Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.