There were a lot of disappointed fans regarding the news that Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez would not happen in 2016 and that Canelo would challenge then-154-pound champion Liam Smith. It seems those fans were not exactly lining up to buy the pay-per-view that occurred on September 17.
Los Angeles Times sports reporter Lance Pugmire revealed that the Canelo vs. Smith pay-per-view buyrate is only in the 290,000-310,000 range, significantly less than what was hoped. Pugmire also said that it may ultimately end up being in the 250,000-300,000 range.
About 51,000 people did fill AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, for the fight. The pay-per-view price was $64.95 and, at 300,000 buys, would mean the fight garnered nearly $20 million in buys -- but that's before the PPV providers get their cut.
Smith is not a household name among boxing fans and the undercard didn't provide much of a reason for people to buy the pay-per-view. Aside from his fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2013, where Mayweather was the bigger name, Canelo has not proven to be a consistently huge pay-per-view draw. His second biggest pay-per-view, which was against Miguel Cotto in 2015 earned 900,000 buys. His three other pay-per-views fights (against Amir Khan, Erislandy Lara and Alfredo Angulo) averaged at around 375,000 buys. Even at the best case scenario of 310,000 buys, it would still be the lowest buyrate in Canelo's career.
A Canelo-Golovkin fight is being targeted to take place in 2017, as both sides tentatively agreed upon when they broke off fight negotiations earlier this summer. Canelo also is suffering from a broken thumb and will not box for the remainder of 2016.