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Report: Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren PPV Buys Expected to Be in 1.2-1.6M Range

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistApril 19, 2021

FILE - Internet personality Jake Paul arrives at the Teen Choice Awards in Los Angeles on Aug. 13, 2017. FBI agents including a SWAT team have raided the apparent home of YouTube star Jake Paul. FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller says agents executed a search warrant Wednesday at the Calabasas, California mansion in connection with an ongoing investigation. She could not say what the probe is about or who the target was. Helicopter video from local TV news showed agents gathering guns from the home that can frequently be seen on Paul's YouTube channel, which has over 20 million followers. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
Jordan Strauss/Associated Press

Saturday's pay-per-view that was headlined by boxer Jake Paul's first-round TKO of Ben Askren is likely to finish with between 1.2 million and 1.6 million buys, according to MMA Fighting's Damon Martin.

Martin provided some context for that estimate:

"Very few pay-per-view events break 1 million buys so this has to be seen as a massive success for Triller after the social media platform promoted a huge event that also featured musical performances from The Black Keys, Justin Bieber, Ice Cube and Snoop Dogg.

"In terms of events in 2021 alone, the recent fight between Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier has been the gold standard for pay-per-view buys this year after that event reportedly sold around 1.6 million buys worldwide with 1.2 million domestically in the United States."

In November, Paul fought former NBA star Nate Robinson on the undercard of the show headlined by Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr., with the PPV doing 1.2 million buys.

Having already built a significant online following with 20.3 followers on YouTube, Paul is becoming a major box-office draw for boxing promoters as well. And those numbers demonstrate why it's worth it for an MMA veteran such as Askren to risk potentially losing to Paul to collect the windfall.

Askren's purse guaranteed him at least $500,000, with a portion of the PPV buys potentially paid out to him as well. To put that into perspective, Jon Jones has yet to earn a single fight purse that eclipses $500,000, and it's more than double Askren received for his loss to Demian Maia in October 2019.

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Perhaps the novelty will wear off after a while. Paul's earning power might lessen once he finally loses, too, since some fans are probably tuning in with the hope of seeing him get his clock cleaned.

For now, the 24-year-old isn't going anywhere, and that encounter with Conor McGregor he's desperately seeking looks a little more plausible.