While Oscar De La Hoya initially claimed that 200,000-400,000 PPV cups were "no brainer" for Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz 3, he did not reach that number. In fact, according to LA Times and Yahoo! journalists Sport, the ransom rate was closer to the tenth of what the Golden Boy meant.
The source of the industry tells me that Lydsell-Ortiz's PPV buy can amount to as many as 30,000 …. but Golf Tiger-Phil can reach a million (everything is back but a low price).
– Lance Pugmire (@latimespugmire) November 30, 2018
Historically, non-UFC promotions have never really done well at pay-per-view. Add the embarrassing promotional effort made to this show and it's not surprising that many people did not take enough $ 40 to look at how two retirees are fighting in the competition.
It is a good thing that both of the headliners allegedly receive 30% of the total revenue for the show, which still ends as a fairly good payday for two people clearly above fighters.
The mercury door was supposedly $ 731,226, and PPV revenue would amount to $ 1-1.2 million at a cost of $ 40. Add goods, sponsorships, all other international bidding and revenue sources, and Ortiz and Liddell will have a decent share of cash added to a $ 200k and $ 250k base salary.
In just 25-30K PPVs, it is unlikely that Ortiz and Liddell "will make the most money they ever made," as De La Hoya bravely argued. But, like its early 400K projection, these lines always feel like a typical promoterspeak anyway.
At the end of the day, they made far more money than any promotions given by two fighters who are pushing 50, and they are just wondering how much money the sports star will do if the UFC gets the most of the cake.
Here are some interesting comparisons with Liddell against Ortiz 2, which allegedly attracted more than a million bucks in 2006.
If Tito and Liddell had the same job in UFC 66, both allegedly having Golden Boy (30% for Chuck / Tito and 40% for Golden Boy for revenue) then each of them could earn nearly $ 6.5 million from ppv & doors only in 2006.
– John S. Nash (@heynottheface) November 28, 2018
As it stands, it is estimated that the UFC gives only about 15% of the income of the fighters.