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About that Charlo Twins PPV Buy Number, and The Minor Fixation On Those Numbers

Michael Woods

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The Charlo twins Jermall and Jermell strutted their stuff on pay per view Saturday evening, Sept. 26th, and coming in, among hardcore fans and pundits who follow the business side of the sport, there was ample conjecture as to how the Texas duo would do.

Of course, some folks care about the PPV buy number more than others. And some care so much, it’s like they believe they had a dog in the hunt, and get a piece of the action. On boxing Twitter, the subject is fairly popular.

For others, how many people purchased a pay per view event is nothing resembling a state secret, not a statistic of tremendous import–but it can be useful to gauge, arguably, the star power of a fighter or fighters. Some would say a PPV buy number speaks to the wellness of the sport as a whole.

It can also indicate other things, like how clotted up a night was, when there were multiple entertainment options for people, and that brought the buy number down. Also, perhaps, it’s a signal of confidence in the economy. You likely know, unemployment ticked up hard nationally, what with states responding to the coronavirus spread, so that means fewer people have less discretionary money to spend on non necessities.

Some of these questions, what the numbers mean, will be asked centered on the performance of the Sept. 26 Charlapalooza, the pay per view topped by the twins. In speaking to promoter Bob Arum on Wednesday, the Vegas based deal-maker said he heard the PPV did 50,000 buys. Another lifer told me he heard that the Showtime production did about 70,000 buys. Arum said OK, let’s say it’s in the middle, 60,000 buys. (NOTE: Arum went deeper into the subject, and said he thinks the time is right to really move mostly away from PPV. You can read more on what he thinks here.)

On Thursday, though, reporter Mike Coppinger Tweeted out a higher number (see below).

100,000, maybe up to 120,000 buys were activated on Sept. 26, Coppinger said sources told him.

Maybe it’s time to get the same people poised to count ballots Trump vs. Biden Nov. 3, to do a hardcore tally? And then, we can keep the counting team at the ready, so they can tally buys for anyone doing a PPV. For UFC and Dana White, for Top Rank, for everyone. And we can all just be patient, and let them do their thing, and announce the super official, not-up-for debate number.

Or we can continue the silly only-in-boxing dance…

Ideally, actually, there would be a shift away from focus on the business of boxing, and instead more discussion of the actual fights, the athletic competitions. But I’m not holding my breath for that–a focus on business, and revenue, and performance as a business entity, has upticked among the general public as the internet age matures. As more information became available, that’s made it more tempting for many fans to sometimes have a “General Manager” mentality, and picture themselves running the show. There is much more of a “anything you can do, I can do better” belief system on display, with social media allowing Regular Joes and Janes the chance at spreading their opinion father and wider than back in the day. It is what it is.

PROGRAMMING NOTE: Showtime is running the Jermall and Jermell wins tomorrow (Saturday, Oct. 3) at 9 PM ET.

Editor/publisher Michael Woods became addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the fearsome Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist Woods has covered the sport since then, for ESPN The Magazine, ESPN.com, ESPN New York, RING, and he was editor of TheSweetScience.com from 2007-2015. Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and numerous other organizations.

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