Beterbiev vs Smith Purse: Can’t Compare With Canelo



Beterbiev vs Smith Purse: Can’t Compare With Canelo

With two of the world's top light heavyweight boxers set to square off in Quebec, Canada this weekend, the Beterbiev vs Smith purse should have each of these elite boxers earning payouts well deserving of their championship stature. 

Regardless of who emerges from the fight with their hand raised this weekend, both Artur Beterbiev and Callum Smith have put in a lifetime worth of work to get to this point — and are owed the gigantic payday they're set to receive. 

Beterbiev vs Smith Payouts: What Will Both of These Fighters Be Earning? 

Considering that the Beterbiev vs Smith purse bid went public, we have an extremely good sense of the exact payout (or very close to it) that each of the main event fighters will be earning in this fight for the WBC, IBF, and WBO World light heavyweight belts. 

What we know for certain is that Top Rank won the purse bid for this Beterbiev vs Smith fight card by paying $2,115,000 — which narrowly surpassed Matchroom Boxing's bid for the bout by about $5,000. With that knowledge, we're able to deduce what each main event fighter will be earning.

Let's start with the reigning champion, Artur Beterbiev. Beterbiev's contract declares that he will earn a whopping 70% of 90% of the winning bid. Therefore, after doing a bit of math, we find out that Artur Beterbiev will be paid what amounts to $1,332,450 for putting his belts on the line against Callum Smith this weekend.

This purse is more than fair, considering that the undefeated Russian dominator knows how to give a crowd their money's worth — proven by how Beterbiev has knocked out every single professional opponent he has faced in the ring. 

While we don't know the exact payouts of Beterbiev's last fights, we do know that this matchup against England's Callum Smith is his highest profile bout to date. With that in mind, there doesn't seem to be any question that the Beterbiev vs Smith purse will provide the current WBC, IBF, and WBO World light heavyweight champion with the most prize money he has ever been paid. 

Now let's move on to the challenger, the 29-1 fighter Callum Smith. The contract Smith signed for this bout against Beterbiev states that the Englishman is set to earn 30% of 90% of the winning bid. So if we do the same math from before, we learn that Callum Smith is making a $571,050 purse for his upcoming fight against Beterbiev. 

This is surely a respectable purse for the challenger, and adds a whole extra layer of incentive for him to emerge victorious on Saturday night (as if he needed any more motivation to become the WBC, IBF, and WBO World light heavyweight champion.)

However, it's worth noting that Smith fought Canelo Álvarez back in December of 2022 — and Canelo is the highest paid active boxer in the world for a reason. For that fight (which Smith lost via unanimous decision), it was estimated that Smith earned anywhere between $8,000,000 and $10,000,000 for entering the ring. 

Therefore, the $571,050 purse that Smith is earning for fighting Artur Beterbiev pales in comparison to the prize money he received for the Canelo fight. 

That being said, if Smith is able to shock the world on Saturday and upset the currently undefeated Beterbiev, his profile in the boxing world will increase tenfold — and with it, his purses will increase as well. 

Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Smith: What Is Winning Worth? 

Another fascinating insight that we're afforded with a public purse bid is how much winning will earn each fighter. According to Top Rank's purse bid, the Beterbiev vs Smith winner will receive the 10% of the bid that is left over from the aforementioned 90% pot that each fighter's pay is pulling from. 

Therefore, after some more math, we discover that the winner of this weekend's bout will receive a sum of $211,500.

That is a gigantic sum reserved for whoever emerges as the champion after the 12 round (or less) bout comes to a conclusion; especially for Callum Smith, as winning that $211,500 would constitute about a 50% increase from what he is already guaranteed to earn. 

Although it's tough to know exactly what the other fighters on the Beterbiev vs Smith undercard will be earning, in terms of their own purses, it's safe to assume that they're being well compensated for playing part in such a great card. 

What's for certain is that Quebec City can expect to have a special night in store on Saturday. Will the undefeated, 19-0 Beterbiev continue his 100% finishing streak and end Callum Smith's title aspirations for good? Or will the English underdog start 2024 off in shocking fashion, and put an end to the reign of one of boxing's most dominating champions? 

All of these questions will be answered on Saturday night — and we can't wait to tune in for it all. 

Grant Young is a sports writer from San Francisco. He has had two professional Muay Thai fights: he got knocked out in one, and got a knockout in the other. When it comes to his favorite fighters, it's Israel Adesanya, and then it's everyone else.