Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor fight falls short of boxing's live gate record

Although the final numbers have yet to be finalized as to whether the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor boxing match will set a new combat sports pay-per-view record, the fight's live gate officially fell short of the top spot.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission confirmed to multiple outlets Wednesday that the Aug. 26 bout made $55,414,865.79 in ticket sales at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, which falls considerably shy of the record total of $72,198,500 at the smaller MGM Grand Garden Arena for Mayweather against Manny Pacquiao in 2015. 

That doesn't mean the fight was a financial disappointment, however, as Mayweather-McGregor still finished with the second largest live gate in Nevada boxing history, per the NSAC website, at more than $35 million higher than the next event on the list --Mayweather's 2013 victory over Canelo Alvarez. 

The disparity between this fight and Mayweather-Pacquiao can likely be connected to the criticism that Mayweather Promotions received for pricing tickets so high that Mayweather-McGregor, despite such incredible demand, failed to sell out. 

According to the NSAC, T-Mobile Arena was configured to seat 17,698 spectators yet sold only 13,094 tickets (with 137 handed out complimentary). In comparison, Mayweather-Pacquiao sold out all 16,219 tickets in less than one minute. 

The fight was a smash success on PPV, however, and remains on track to potentially break the 4.6 million mark set by Mayweather-Pacquiao two years ago, according to Showtime Sports executive Stephen Espinoza. 

"We are now sort of mid-four million," Espinoza told MMAFighting.com on Tuesday. "If we see the kind of growth that we typically see, then we'll break the record. I don't want to assume we get the typical growth, because this is not a typical event. There are many different ways in which this event behaved differently. But we have a very good shot at breaking the record."

Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe became agitated when asked by reporters about the high tickets prices during Mayweather's media workout just days before the fight. 

"I'm actually tired of haring that question because right now we have over $60 million dollars in the box office," Ellerbe said. "You tell me what part of that remotely looks like ticket sales are slow? This isn't the damn Rolling Stones concert. That's the only thing that sells out in seconds."

Ellerbe was asked again after the fight about whether he regretted pricing the tickets so high and he paused to laugh before delivering his answer. 

"I wouldn't say that. Just sometimes it's all about delivering," Ellerbe said. "I think the fans enjoyed themselves, the ones who were here. It was a great event and a wonderful turnout. You're not always going to get it right but we get it right more often than not."

CBS Sports Insider

Brian Campbell covers MMA, boxing and WWE. The Connecticut native joined CBS Sports in 2017 and has covered combat sports since 2010. He has written and hosted various podcasts and digital shows for ESPN... Full Bio

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