How Much Money Do Boxers Make?

Last Updated on January 13, 2024 by Emily Foster

As a professional copywriting journalist, I have been following the world of boxing for a long time and have researched extensively to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the earnings of boxers. In the following sections, I will delve into various factors that influence how much money boxers make, including fight purses, endorsements, and pay-per-view revenue. I will also discuss the challenges and risks that come with a career in professional boxing.

Key Takeaways:

  • Professional boxers can make significant amounts of money through various channels of revenue.
  • Fight purses, pay-per-view revenue, and endorsements are significant contributors to a boxer’s income.
  • The level of skill and reputation of a boxer can impact their earnings.
  • Boxing remains a popular and lucrative sport with the potential for financial success.

The Professional Boxing Industry

Before we delve into the earnings of boxers in the United States, it is important to have an understanding of the structure and governing bodies of the professional boxing industry. Boxing, as a sport, has been around for centuries and has evolved greatly since its inception. Today, it is a multibillion-dollar industry that is overseen by several organizations.

One of the most prominent organizations in professional boxing is the World Boxing Association (WBA), which was founded in 1921 and is based in Panama. The WBA is responsible for overseeing boxing matches and ensuring that boxers adhere to its rules and regulations. Another governing body is the World Boxing Council (WBC), founded in 1963, which has a similar role to the WBA and is based in Mexico City.

Professional boxing in the United States is dominated by several major promotions, including Top Rank Boxing, Golden Boy Promotions, and Matchroom Boxing USA. These promotions organize and promote boxing events, securing venues, television deals, and sponsorships for their fighters. They also manage the careers of their boxers and negotiate contracts on their behalf.

Promotion Notable Boxers
Top Rank Boxing Terence Crawford, Vasiliy Lomachenko, Tyson Fury
Golden Boy Promotions Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Ryan Garcia, Jaime Munguia
Matchroom Boxing USA Anthony Joshua, Gennady Golovkin, Demetrius Andrade

Outside of the United States, other prominent boxing promotions include Queensberry Promotions in the UK, Tokyo Boxing Commission in Japan, and Universum Box-Promotion in Germany.

The professional boxing industry has not been without its controversies, however. In recent years, several high-profile boxers have been accused of doping, and there have been accusations of corruption and unfair judging. Nevertheless, boxing remains a popular sport that attracts millions of viewers and generates significant revenue for its top athletes and promoters.

Professional Boxing

The Different Levels of Boxers

Boxing is a sport that requires a high level of skill, training, and dedication to excel. Professional boxers can be categorized into different levels based on their abilities, experience, and reputation. Understanding the different levels of boxers can provide insights into how much money they can earn and the types of fights they can expect to participate in.

Amateur Boxers

Amateur boxers are those who compete in the sport without earning any financial compensation. Amateur boxers may participate in regional or national competitions, including the Olympics. While they may not earn a salary, some amateur boxers may receive funding from their national governing body or sponsorships from brands.

Up-And-Coming Boxers

Up-and-coming boxers are those who have turned professional but have yet to establish themselves as elite athletes. These boxers may have a few wins under their belt but lack the experience and reputation of more established fighters. Up-and-coming boxers may participate in lower-tier promotions and earn relatively modest fight purses compared to more established athletes.

Mid-Level Boxers

Mid-level boxers are those who have gained some recognition in the sport and are beginning to make a name for themselves. These boxers may have a winning record and have fought in promotions with wider audiences. Mid-level boxers typically earn higher fight purses and may also have endorsement deals with brands.

Elite Boxers

Elite boxers are the most well-known and respected athletes in the sport. These boxers have established themselves as the best in their weight class and have a record of winning high-stakes fights against other elite opponents. Elite boxers participate in the biggest promotions and earn the highest fight purses. They also have lucrative endorsement deals and may receive a share of pay-per-view revenue.

In summary, the level of a boxer’s skill and experience can significantly impact their earnings in the sport. Up-and-coming boxers may earn relatively modest fight purses, while elite boxers can make millions of dollars per fight. The next section will examine the factors that influence how much money boxers can earn in the sport.

The Factors Influencing Boxers’ Earnings

Professional boxers can earn substantial amounts of money, but their actual earnings depend on a range of factors. In this section, I will discuss some of the key elements that can influence a boxer’s income.

Fight Purses

The fight purse is the amount of money a boxer receives for a particular bout. The size of the fight purse varies depending on the boxer’s level, the type of fight, and the promoter’s budget. For example, boxers in high-profile matchups, such as championship fights or bouts between two popular fighters, can expect larger purses than those in lower-level or less popular fights. Negotiations between the boxer, promoter, and governing body determine the fight purse amount.

Endorsement Deals

Many professional boxers secure lucrative endorsement deals with brands that want to tap into the sport’s popularity and the boxers’ profiles. Endorsement deals can provide boxers with substantial income, particularly if they are well-known or have a large fan base. For example, Gatorade pays professional boxer Gennady Golovkin a reported $1.5 million per year to promote their products.

Pay-Per-View Revenue

Pay-per-view (PPV) revenue is the money generated by selling access to watch a boxing match on television or online. Boxers who have a large fan base or are involved in high-profile fights can earn a substantial amount of money from PPV revenue. For example, the 2015 fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao generated over $600 million in PPV revenue, with both boxers earning over $100 million for the bout.

Ticket Sales

Ticket sales are another significant revenue stream for boxers, particularly for live events. The amount of money a boxer earns from ticket sales depends on the size of the venue and the ticket prices. For example, the 2017 fight between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin generated over $27 million in ticket sales alone.

Overall, the amount of money a boxer makes depends on many factors, and earnings can vary widely from fighter to fighter. Understanding the different elements that contribute to a boxer’s income can help aspiring boxers and fans alike better understand the sport and its financial landscape.

Boxing gloves

“The fight game is tough. It’s always been tough. And it’s always going to be tough. It’s just a matter of how tough you are and what you’re willing to go through to get the victory.” – Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Top-Earning Boxers in the U.S.

When it comes to the world of professional boxing, some athletes have managed to secure lucrative contracts and endorsement deals that have set them apart from the competition. Below, I will take a closer look at some of the highest-earning boxers in the United States, based on Forbes’ 2021 list of the world’s highest-paid athletes.

Boxer Earnings (in millions) Notable Achievements
Saul “Canelo” Alvarez $94 Unified WBA, WBC, and WBO middleweight champion
Tyson Fury $50 WBC heavyweight champion
Deontay Wilder $46.5 Former WBC heavyweight champion
Anthony Joshua $45 Unified WBA, IBF, and WBO heavyweight champion
Manny Pacquiao $40 Eight-division world champion
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As we can see from the chart, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is currently the top-earning boxer in the United States, with earnings of $94 million. His impressive record includes a unified title in three weight classes, which has helped secure lucrative endorsements with brands such as DAZN, Hennessy, and Under Armour.

Other leading boxers on the list include Tyson Fury, who earned $50 million, and Deontay Wilder, who earned $46.5 million. Both athletes made significant earnings from their highly anticipated heavyweight trilogy, which culminated in Fury winning by TKO in October 2021.

Finally, Anthony Joshua and Manny Pacquiao round out the top five, with earnings of $45 million and $40 million, respectively. Anthony Joshua’s earnings have been boosted by his impressive record as a unified heavyweight champion, while Manny Pacquiao continues to attract endorsements from companies such as AirAsia and GCOX.

top-earning boxers in the U.S.

The Determination of Fight Purses in Professional Boxing

The process of determining fight purses is a crucial aspect of the earnings of boxers. A fight purse refers to the total amount of money that a boxer is paid for their participation in a fight, including the base salary and any bonuses or incentives that may be included.

The determination of fight purses often involves negotiations between the boxer’s management, the promoter, and the relevant governing body. Factors that may influence the amount of money a boxer receives include their level of experience, their reputation, and current market demand for their services.

Fight Purses Determined in Professional Boxing

There are several methods used to determine fight purses in professional boxing. One approach is to use a predetermined schedule of payouts based on the boxer’s level and experience. This schedule may be set by the governing body or the promoter and can provide a baseline for negotiations.

In some cases, fight purses may be determined through a bidding process in which multiple promoters submit offers to the boxer’s management team, and the highest bid is accepted. This method can be highly competitive and may result in significant payouts for the boxer.

Another factor that can influence fight purses is the revenue generated by the fight, including ticket sales, pay-per-view revenue, and sponsorship deals. Boxers who have a larger following or can attract a more extensive audience may be able to command higher payouts, as promoters seek to capitalize on their popularity.

Overall, the process of determining fight purses in professional boxing is complex, and the payouts can vary significantly depending on the boxer’s level, reputation, and market demand. Nevertheless, for top-performing boxers, the potential earnings can be substantial, making professional boxing an attractive career choice for many.

The Pay-Per-View and TV Deals that Boost Boxers’ Earnings

Pay-per-view (PPV) and TV deals are two significant sources of revenue for professional boxers. When popular boxers fight, fans are willing to pay to watch the bout on television or via a streaming platform. These events generate a considerable amount of money for fighters and their promoters.

Boxers can negotiate their share of the PPV revenue as part of their contract before a fight. Typically, the fighters with higher profiles and a proven track record of drawing viewers can command a more significant cut of the PPV revenue. For instance, in the highly publicized Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor fight in 2017, Mayweather reportedly earned around $300 million, thanks in large part to his cut of the massive PPV revenue.

pay-per-view and TV deals

In addition to PPV, boxers can also earn from TV deals, which can involve broadcasting rights and advertising revenue. For example, the heavyweight title fight between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury in 2018 was broadcast by Showtime, which paid the boxers and promoters based on TV ratings and advertising revenue. The fight was a success, with over 300,000 viewers, making it one of the highest-grossing fights of the year.

However, not all boxers are fortunate enough to secure PPV or TV deals. Lesser-known fighters or those with a less established fan base may not be able to attract enough viewers to make PPV or TV deals worthwhile. These fighters may have to rely on other sources of income, such as endorsements or appearance fees, to boost their earnings.

The Pros and Cons of PPV and TV Deals

While PPV and TV deals can provide a significant boost to a boxer’s earnings, they also come with some risks. For example, if a fight is not well-received by fans, it can result in lower PPV buys and reduced income for the fighters. Additionally, if a boxer has a low profile or struggles to draw viewers, they may not be able to secure a lucrative deal and may miss out on a substantial amount of income.

“Boxers with higher profiles and a proven track record of drawing viewers can command a more significant cut of the PPV revenue.”

Nevertheless, for boxers who can secure PPV or TV deals, these arrangements can be incredibly lucrative. When combined with fight purses and endorsements, PPV and TV deals can make up a significant portion of a boxer’s income and contribute to their overall financial success.

The Role of Sponsorships and Endorsements in a Boxer’s Earnings

Boxers can earn significant sums through sponsorships and endorsements. These partnerships involve collaborating with brands that want to promote their products or services through the boxer’s image and influence.

Securing sponsorships and endorsements is not only about fame; it also depends on factors such as a boxer’s reputation as a brand ambassador, their social media presence, and their performance in the ring. Companies seek boxers with a massive following and a positive public image. For example, boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr., who has over 25 million Instagram followers, commands high endorsement fees ranging from $10 million to $40 million.

Endorsement deals can be exclusive or non-exclusive and often involve promoting products such as clothing, sports equipment, and energy drinks. Boxers can also appear in commercials, billboards, and print ads.

“Boxers who score endorsement deals can earn significant sums beyond their fight purses. For example, Manny Pacquiao’s endorsement deals with Nike, Foot Locker, and other brands have bolstered his earnings to over $500 million.”

– Me

Boxer Endorsements and Sponsorships
Canelo Alvarez DAZN, Hennessy, Everlast, Under Armour, and more
Anthony Joshua Under Armour, Jaguar, Beats by Dre
Tyson Fury WWE, Reebok, BT Sport, and more
Manny Pacquiao Nike, Foot Locker, Monster Energy, and more

As the table shows, boxers of all levels can earn significant sums through sponsorships and endorsements. However, these deals are not guaranteed, and boxers often need to maintain their public persona and performance to maintain these partnerships.

Furthermore, endorsements and sponsorships are not exclusive to boxing only; boxers may need to compete with athletes from other sports such as basketball, football, and tennis for these opportunities. However, with the right profile, ability, and brand alignment, boxers can secure lucrative deals that complement their fight purses and contribute to their overall earnings.

sponsorships and endorsements

The Comparison of Boxers’ Earnings with other Combat Sports

While professional boxing is known for its high earnings potential, how does it compare to other combat sports? Let’s take a closer look at the earning potential of boxers in comparison to mixed martial arts (MMA) and professional wrestling.

Combat Sport Top-Earning Athletes Median Earnings
Professional Boxing Floyd Mayweather Jr. – $915 million $51,000 per fight
Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Conor McGregor – $180 million $68,500 per fight
Professional Wrestling John Cena – $55 million $500,000 per year

Based on the above table, it is clear that boxers have the highest earning potential, particularly at the top end of the scale. However, it’s important to note that the median earnings for boxers are lower than those of MMA fighters.

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One reason for this discrepancy is the structure of the two sports. Professional boxing is dominated by a small number of promotions and fights can be infrequent for all but the top-ranked fighters. In contrast, MMA has a more diverse range of promotions, which means that fighters can compete more frequently and earn a more consistent income.

Professional wrestling has a different structure altogether, with athletes signed to contracts with entertainment companies such as WWE. While the salaries for wrestlers can be high, their earnings are tied to their performance and popularity, with many relying on merchandise sales and endorsement deals to supplement their income.

Overall, while boxers have the potential to earn the most money in combat sports, factors such as the frequency of fights and the structure of the sport can impact their earnings. As the combat sports landscape continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how the earning potential of boxers compares to that of other athletes.

comparison of earnings between combat sports

Challenges and Risks of Professional Boxing

Professional boxing can be a lucrative pursuit. However, it also presents various challenges and risks that athletes must navigate. These factors make it essential for prospective boxers to understand the less glamorous aspects of the sport.

One significant challenge is the physical toll that boxing takes on the body. Repeated blows to the head and body can lead to serious long-term health issues such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which is a type of degenerative brain disease. Additionally, boxers face a high risk of injury during training and fights. Broken noses, facial lacerations, and other types of injuries are common in the sport.

Another challenge is the uncertain nature of the industry. Boxers must frequently hustle to secure fights and promotional deals. Even top-level athletes can struggle to find consistent income streams, making it difficult to plan for the future.

Alongside these challenges, there are also various financial risks associated with professional boxing. Athletes typically shoulder the bulk of their training and living expenses, which can be substantial. Additionally, if a boxer suffers a significant injury or struggles to win fights, their earnings potential can quickly evaporate.

Despite these challenges and risks, professional boxing continues to attract new athletes eager to test their skills and pursue financial success.

Challenges and Risks of Professional Boxing

“Repetition is the father of learning, I repeat myself every day.” – Conor McGregor

Current Trends and Future Outlook

As the sport of professional boxing continues to evolve, several trends are emerging that are shaping the future of the industry. One of the most notable is the rise of social media and digital platforms as a way for boxers to connect with fans and increase their visibility.

Platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube have become essential tools for boxers to build their personal brands and engage with audiences. By sharing training videos, behind-the-scenes content, and personal stories, boxers can create a loyal fan base that follows them both in and out of the ring.

Another trend is the increasing focus on diversity and inclusion within the sport. With the growing recognition of the need for representation and equal opportunities in all fields, professional boxing is working to be more inclusive of women, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

Future Outlook

Looking ahead, the future of professional boxing looks bright. The sport continues to attract new fans and young talent from around the world, and technological advancements are creating new opportunities for boxers to build their careers and reach a wider audience.

However, the sport also faces challenges, including ongoing concerns about safety and fair pay for boxers. As the industry continues to evolve, it will be important for all stakeholders to work together to address these issues and ensure that the sport remains sustainable and inclusive for all.

Current Trends and Future Outlook


In this article, I have explored the world of professional boxing and delved into the earnings and payouts that boxers receive for their fights. From understanding the structure of the professional boxing industry to analyzing the various factors that influence a boxer’s earnings, we have gained a comprehensive perspective on this exciting and challenging sport.

We have seen that boxers can be categorized into different levels based on their skills and experience, and that several factors such as fight purses, endorsements, and pay-per-view revenue can impact a boxer’s overall earnings. While some boxers earn a great deal of money, there are also challenges and risks associated with the sport, including the physical toll and financial uncertainty.

Nevertheless, professional boxing remains a driving force for many athletes who are drawn to the pursuit of financial success and glory in the ring. As the industry continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how current trends shape the earnings of boxers in the future.

In conclusion, understanding how much money boxers make is a complex and multifaceted issue that requires careful analysis and consideration of various factors. Whether we are boxing fans or simply curious observers, we can appreciate the skill, dedication, and drive that it takes to be a successful professional boxer.


How much money do boxers make?

Boxers’ earnings can vary greatly depending on their level of skill, experience, and profile. While some top-earning boxers make millions of dollars per fight, others may earn significantly less.

What factors influence boxers’ earnings?

Several factors can impact a boxer’s earnings, including fight purses, endorsement deals, pay-per-view revenue, and ticket sales. The level of competition and the boxer’s popularity also play a role in determining their income.

Who are some of the top-earning boxers in the United States?

Some of the highest-earning boxers in the U.S. include well-known names like Floyd Mayweather Jr., Canelo Alvarez, and Manny Pacquiao. These athletes have secured lucrative contracts and endorsement deals.

How are fight purses determined?

Fight purses are typically determined through negotiations between boxers, promoters, and governing bodies. The boxers’ level of skill, popularity, and the expected revenue generated from the fight all play a role in determining the purse amount.

What role do pay-per-view and TV deals play in boxers’ earnings?

Pay-per-view and TV deals can significantly boost a boxer’s earnings. These arrangements allow boxers to earn a percentage of the revenue generated from viewership, providing an additional source of income.

How do sponsorships and endorsements contribute to a boxer’s income?

Boxers often secure sponsorships and endorsements from brands looking to capitalize on the sport’s popularity and the boxers’ profiles. These partnerships can provide a substantial boost to a boxer’s income, particularly for those with a large fan base.

How do the earnings of boxers compare to those in other combat sports?

The earnings of boxers can vary compared to other combat sports such as MMA and professional wrestling. Each sport has its own revenue streams and fan bases, which can influence the income potential for athletes.

What are some of the challenges and risks associated with professional boxing?

Professional boxing comes with various challenges and risks, including physical injuries, the uncertainty of securing fights, and the potential financial pitfalls if a boxer’s career doesn’t take off as expected.

What are the current trends and future outlook for boxers’ earnings?

The professional boxing industry is constantly evolving. Current trends indicate a growing emphasis on pay-per-view revenue, digital streaming platforms, and cross-promotional events. The future outlook for boxers’ earnings will continue to be shaped by these developments.

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