Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez have sparked immediate interest in their Sept. 14 super-welterweight title fight, a sellout generating a live gate of more than $19 million in less than 24 hours serving as confirmation.
So has the 11-city press tour that has already taken the fighters to New York City, Washington, Grand Rapids, Mich., and Chicago, with the Los Angeles stop coming Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at L.A. Live.
“People are going crazy over this fight ... long lines camping out from 1 a.m.,” promoter Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions said Wednesday. “This is the first time since Oscar De La Hoya that Mayweather has fought someone with this big of a following.”
It’s Schaefer’s hope that the battle of unbeatens at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas between the gifted, 36-year-old Mayweather and the popular, power-punching Alvarez of Mexico can rival or surpass the pay-per-view revenue generated by De La Hoya-Mayweather, which Mayweather won by a split decision in 2007.
“This has been the most amazing tour I’ve ever been on,” Schaefer said. “They’ve been having extremely intense stare-downs. They respect each other and their skills. It’s clear it’s going to be one heck of a fight.
“It’s also clear that Canelo is more than just a star in Mexico. He’s a star here in the U.S. too. The New York crowd was 60-40 in his favor.”
The bout is Mayweather’s second in a possible six-fight, 30-month deal with Showtime, and the boxer has told reporters he plans to duplicate his May-September duo of fights in 2014 after cruising to a decision over Robert Guerrero in May.