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6 Dec, 2020 19:16

‘We upset them’: Social media boss slams cynics as he reveals huge viewing figures for Tyson-Jones fight made his company $80MN

‘We upset them’: Social media boss slams cynics as he reveals huge viewing figures for Tyson-Jones fight made his company $80MN

The new platform that was lauded by boxing icon Mike Tyson ahead of his comeback against Roy Jones Jr has claimed incredibly successful viewing figures, with its owner pressing ahead with plans for new events after a huge payday.

Pay-per-view newcomers Triller stand to make a staggering total of around $80 million from the much-anticipated scrap, according to its owner who has said that more than the veteran showdown lured more than 1.6 million buys from eager fans.

Hitting out at cynics who had questioned the value of novelty fights, owner Ryan Kavanaugh said that the showdown had comfortably eclipsed both of the previous two boxing bills to exceed a million buys - both coming between current greats Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin in 2017 and 2018.

“Despite everyone wanting for it not to work, we upset them by changing things up and making it work," the businessman boasted to Boxing Scene, ahead of numerous events featuring up-and-coming fighters and musical acts in 2021.

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Earlier this week, Kavanaugh revealed that a new concept, "The Fight Club", will be fronted by rapper-turned co-commentator Snoop Dogg, whose witty analysis was one of the unexpected highlights of Tyson's return.

Kavanaugh added that skeptics would not have "a gun to their head" if they did not want to pay for "non-athletic contests".

Experts and athletes expressed fears over the safety of allowing boxing novices to take part in celebrity fights, voicing more concerns after former NBA star Nate Robinson was pummeled for just over a round before being brutally knocked out by Jake Paul on the undercard.

The counter-argument, positioning the events as a way to attract new audiences and achieve sizeable commercial success, has been emphatically underlined if Kavanaugh's claims are accurate.

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Tyson's draw with fellow former title-holder Jones may have earned more buys than his first fight with old rival Evander Holyfield in 1996, and came close to the numbers for the infamous rematch a year later in which Tyson was disqualified after biting his opponent's ear.

That was the most popular heavyweight fight of all time, with 1.99 million followers, although it could not match Floyd Mayweather's record of 4.6 million sells for his win over Manny Pacquiao in 2015.

Mayweather's fight with ex-UFC champion Conor McGregor, in 2017, reached 4.3 million buys, but the most high-profile heavyweight meeting of 2020, between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder, managed fewer than 850,000 buys.

Tyson is thought to have made $10 million from his first fight in more than 15 years, with Jones Jr earning around $3 million.

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