Crawford vs. Postol: Will it bring in 75K PPV buys on HBO?

By Boxing News - 05/11/2016 - Comments

crawford43By Chris Williams: Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has really put in a big effort to make sure the Terence Crawford vs. Viktor Postol fight is a big success on HBO PPV on July 23. According to Dan Rafael, Arum needs 75,000 PPV buys for the Crawford-Postol fight to break even. The going price for the card is $49.99. I don’t know about you but that’s a lot of green. I could fill my car up with gas for a week for that kind of cash. I’m still trying to decide whether I’ll watch the Crawford-Postol fight live.

While that’s not much compared to extremely high $100 asking price for last year’s fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao fight sold for on HBO/Showtime PPV, it’s still quite a lot of money for two fighters that aren’t well known in the United States and are light years away from becoming stars of any kind.

Crawford has only been fighting on television for a short while, and he’s only had a couple of interesting opponents during his eight-year pro career in Ricky Burns and Yuriorkis Gamboa. The rest of the guys that Crawford has fought have been no-hopers in showcase fights.

The 32-year-old Ukrainian Postol has faced only one good opponent during his nine-year pro career in his fight against Lucas Matthysse. Postol won that fight by a 10th round knockout last October.

It was a good win for Postol, but still doesn’t mean he should now be fighting in PPV. If that was the case then guys like Danny Garcia and Adrien Broner should have been headlining their own PPV cards ages ago because they bring in better ratings than Postol, and I suspect both of them would beat Matthysse too. Garcia already beat Matthysse first before Postol did.

“I realize these are two guys, even Crawford, who are known basically only to the boxing community and not the general public. But it’s a start. You have to start somewhere on pay-per-view so this is the start even if it was not my first choice,” said Arum via

Crawford and Postol are known only among the hardcore boxing fans. The casual fans wouldn’t know who these guys are, as those types of fans mainly just know guys like Floyd Mayweather Jr., Miguel Cotto, Manny Pacquiao, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin.

The interesting thing about the Crawford-Postol fight card is how good the undercard is. Arum has put in a lot of effort in putting some talented fighters on the undercard. The fights aren’t that great, but Arum at least has put some talented fighters on the card. The undercard of the Crawford vs. Postol fight is much better than the horrible undercard for the Pacquiao vs. Mayweather. It’s sad really because with all the money the promoters for that card had to play with, they could have put together a sensational card to give the boxing fans value for the sky high prices they were being asked to pay to see that card.

Instead of seeing great undercard fights for the huge cost of the card, the fans were stuck seeing a handful of mismatches. It was horrible and depressing. Instead of seeing this as an opportunity to put on a great product to win fans for life, the promoters blew it by putting together some dreadful fights for the Mayweather-Pacquiao undercard.

Here are the fights for the Crawford vs. Postol undercard:

Oscar Valdez (19-0, 17 KOs) vs. Matias Carlos Adrian Rueda (26-0, 23 KOs)

Jose Benavidez (24-0, 16 KOs) vs. Francisco Santana (24-4-1, 12 KOs)

IK Yang (19-1, 14 KOs) vs. Leonardo Zappaavigna (34-2, 24 KOs)

Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez (34-0, 24 KOs) vs. Dominik Britsch (32-2-1, 11 KOs)

Ryota Murata (9-0, 6 KOs) vs. George Tadooahnippah (34-2-3, 24 KOs)

Now let’s compare the Craword-Postol card with the terrible undercard for the Pacquiao-Mayweather card. Here’s the skeletal undercard for the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao card last year in May. You tell me if you think this was a worthy card to be paying $100 on PPV:

Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Gamalier Rodriguez

Brad Solomon vs. Adrian Granados

Jesse Hart vs. Mike Jimenez

Christopher Pearson vs. Said El Harrak

Leo Santa Cruz vs. Jose Cayetano

YouTube video

That was just a horrible card. No wonder so many boxing fans were angry about the card. There was no meat for the fans to make up for what they didn’t get to see in the main event between Pacquiao and Mayweather.

“Not only are they two champions, they’re both undefeated and, without any question, the two best 140-pounders around today,” Arum said. “That’s why I’m so excited about this fight. When the best fight the best — and it’s clearly, in this division, the best fighting the best — the public will respond.”

I wouldn’t go jumping to conclusions if I were Arum thinking that Postol and Crawford are the best light welterweights in the division. Until they fight Adrien Broner and Eduard Troyanovsky, you can’t say that Crawford and Postol are the best fighters in the 140lb division. I think Crawford and Postol are good fighters, but so, so boring to watch, especially when they’re matched up against some hopeless case of a fighter that has no chance of winning.