Manny Pacquiao destroyed Antonio Margarito's face to win boxing's junior middleweight title bout two weeks ago — and the destruction won him a share of a pay-per-view title, too.
The Nov. 13 fight at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas generated 1.15 million pay-per-view buys — and $64 million in domestic revenue — according to initial figures released by HBO, which broadcast the fight on HBO PPV. (Those numbers figure to be higher when a full tally is released.)
It's the third consecutive year a Pacquiao fight has generated more than a million pay-per-viewers — tying a record held by Iron Mike Tyson, whose fights were must-see TV.
Pacquiao's lopsided eighth-round destruction of Oscar De La Hoya, which sent him into retirement, generated 1.25 million buys in 2008. Pacquiao's 12th-round knockout of Miguel Cotto in 2009 sold 1.2 million units.
"We're thrilled with the PPV performance," HBO senior vice president Mark Taffet said in a statement. "With the breadth of interest from sports, entertainment and news media following Manny and the fight, boxing has tremendous momentum as we finish 2010 and head into a very exciting 2011."
But the Pacquiao-Margarito fight still didn't draw the biggest pay-per-view audience of 2010. Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s win over "Sugar" Shane Mosley generated 1.4 million.
A Pacquiao-Mayweather matchup would undoubtedly draw upwards of 1.5 million — but so far Mayweather has turned down offers to fight Pacquiao, including the fight on Nov. 13.