WWE Updates on Mayweather, Smackdown & MMA


The latest issue of the Wrestling Observer has more on Floyd Mayweather Jr’s reported $20 million pay-off for working WrestleMania 24, the Smackdown TV deal and the rumor that the McMahons are possibly getting into MMA…

Some boxing sources have said the fee is more like $5 million, whilst another said it was upwards of $2 million plus a generous PPV percentage, but if it is true then it is far and away the biggest fee paid to any celebrity participant in WWE history. William Perry wound up receiving $150,000 for WrestleMania II. Mike Tyson got $3.5 million for WrestleMania XIV. Last year, Donald Trump said he had $2.5 million donated to charity for his involvement. WWE took in $25.3 million on PPV from a 1.25 million buys at last year’s event, plus $5.4 million at the gate, plus sponsorship deals and DVD sales. This year, if they are splashing out $20 million on Mayweather, they will need a 1.8 million buys. Factoring in Mayweather’s lack of international marketability, Dave Meltzer estimates that Mayweather will have to draw over 800,000 extra buys in the domestic market alone to justify the reported fee.

MyNetwork TV are thought to have agreed to pay WWE more than $700,000 per week for Smackdown, which is what CW were paying. No decision has been made regarding the schedule, although most in WWE are expecting the show to go back to Thursdays. There was some talk of moving it to Tuesdays but Sci Fi still has live ECW scheduled then. MyNetwork only programs shows from 8-10pm on Thursdays, so Smackdown would not be going head-to-head with Impact for both hours.

The rumours about Mark Cuban and Vince McMahon working on an MMA project together are false. Vince, as well as Linda, Stephanie and Triple H, have no knowledge of or interest in MMA and do not want to do business in it as they feel it has no longevity.

Credit: Wrestling Observer Newsletter, 03 March 2008 (subscribe here)