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Pacquiao vs. Ugas Purse: Prize Money Payouts After Main Event Fight

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IIAugust 22, 2021

Manny Pacquiao, right, of the Philippines, hits Yordenis Ugas, of Cuba, in a welterweight championship boxing match Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
John Locher/Associated Press

If Saturday night was the final time that Manny Pacquiao stepped into a ring during his professional boxing career, then an all-time great didn't go out in the way he would have hoped to.

In his first match in more than two years, Pacquiao was defeated by Yordenis Ugas, who won via unanimous decision at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Ugas successfully defended his WBA welterweight championship to spoil Pacquiao's return to the ring.

Even though Pacquiao may not have won the bout, he's still coming out of it with a big payday. While the official purses haven't been announced, Josef Ramos ofΒ BusinessMirror reported that Pacquiao was making a guaranteed $5 million for the fight, with that total potentially reaching $25 million based on pay-per-view sales.

It's unknown how much money will be going to Ugas, who was a late addition to the bout after Pacquiao's original opponent, Errol Spence Jr., withdrew because of an eye injury. Regardless of how much Ugas gets paid, the 35-year-old earned the biggest victory of his boxing career Saturday.

And Ugas may have been the final opponent of Pacquiao's career. After the fight, Pacquiao was noncommittal when asked about his boxing future.

"I don't know. Let me rest first and relax and make a decision if I fight again," Pacquiao said during the postfight interview (h/t The Athletic'sΒ Dan Santaromita).

Pacquiao will be deciding whether he wants to run for president of the Philippines, and if he does, that could herald the end of his boxing days. After falling to Ugas, Pacquiao now has an all-time record of 62-8-2.

By facing Ugas, Pacquiao has now had a professional boxing match in four decades, as he started his career in 1995. So if this ends up being it for him, it was an incredible run.

Ugas improved to 27-4 in his professional career by notching his fourth straight win. He won the WBA welterweight title with a split-decision victory over Abel Ramos in September, but his win over Pacquiao was much more impressive.

After he wasn't even supposed to be in the main event, the Cuban made a statement.

"He's a great competitor, but I came in here to show I am the champion of the WBA," Ugas said, per Greg Beacham of the Associated Press. "A lot of respect for him, but I won this fight."

There are plenty of questions moving forward. Who will be Ugas' next opponent? Which potential opponent could beat him? And, of course, what's next for Pacquiao?

Regardless of what happens, both boxers provided an entertaining bout, especially considering it's always fun to see Pacquiao in the ring. But it was clear that Ugas was the better fighter Saturday night.