There’s a reason they call boxerFloyd Mayweather Jr. “Money.” He fought twice during the past 12 months, knocking out Victor Ortiz in September and winning a unanimous decision in May against Miguel Cotto. He spent less than one hour in the ring to dispatch his two foes.
His combined payday for the bouts: $85 million.
That helped make Mayweather the world’s highest-paid athlete over the past year, unseating Tiger Woods, who has been the top-earner since 2001. Woods ranks third this year with earnings of $59.4 million.
Mayweather maximizes his earnings by also acting as his own fight promoter through his company Mayweather Promotions. He collects all of the revenue from tickets, pay-per-view and sponsorships and covers the costs, including the purse for his opponent. His take home per fight is typically at least 50% higher than what his rival Manny Pacquiaoearns.
Being a wildly polarizing figure doesn’t seem to have hurt his earnings. He charmed old ladies as a contestant on Dancing with the Stars in 2007 and provoked outrage with his racially charged, hate-filled rant against Pacquiao in 2010. His antics create buzz, and the result is both boxing fans and people who are normally indifferent to the sport pay up for his bouts. He has been a part of the four biggest non-heavyweight PPV events in boxing’s history. The Cotto fight generated $94 million in PPV receipts. (FIND OUT WHO WAS SECOND HERE!)