ECONOMIC IMPACT OF IRON ON VEGAS; ATTENDANCE, PPV BUYS LOW
Mike Tyson's fifth round KO of Francois Botha Saturday
night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas "should generate at
least" an $8M non-gaming economic impact for the city and
"immeasurable exposure to a new audience," according to
Richard Velotta of the LAS VEGAS SUN. The Las Vegas
Convention and Visitors Authority has "no primary research"
on the spending habits of boxing fans, but "believes they
are similar to most tourists" (LAS VEGAS SUN, 1/15). In Las
Vegas, Kevin Iole wrote that the announced crowd was 12,519,
2,000 fewer than capacity. An MGM Grand spokesperson said
"a very limited number of $200 tickets were offered to hotel
employees" at prices ranging from $16 to $48, but wouldn't
say how many were purchased (L.V. REVIEW-JOURNAL, 1/17). In
London, Srikumar Sen wrote that MGM Grand employees could
buy $1,200 ringside seats for $50, and $200 seats for $14.
Sen: "It was the only way to fill the arena" (LONDON TIMES,
1/18). In Philadelphia, Jay Searcy called the attendance "a
disappointment to MGM Grand execs, who expect to bring Tyson
back for an April bout" (INQUIRER, 1/17). USA TODAY's Jon
Saraceno, on the low turnout for Tyson: "The public appears
either suspicious, fed up or both" (USA TODAY, 1/18).
ON PPV: ESPN's Al Bernstein: "There are some
indications that maybe the pay-per-view didn't do that well.
... One Phoenix radio station reported to me ... that in the
town of Phoenix, a place where Tyson trained and where he
received a lot of media attention, only 600 homes bought the
fight. If that is true, that doesn't bode well for the
entire country. And I don't think you can blame the
promoters, America Presents or Showtime, they did a very
aggressive marketing campaign. It may just be that people
are not sure they want the Tyson act anymore" (ESPN, 1/18).
In Denver, Bob Diddlebock writes that CO-based MediaOne,
which offers PPV service to 2.65 million of its 4.5 million
U.S. customers, said "about" 53,000 bought the Tyson-Botha
fight. TCI spokesperson Matt Fleury said that the company
"significantly measured" expectations due to Tyson's
"personal and professional issues" (DENVER POST, 1/19).
THE "GET REAL" DEAL: Tyson wore his new black "Get
Real" trunks, the brand designed by his wife, Monica. Tyson
said he is "sure the public will snap up." Tyson: "My
wife's the capitalist. I'm the socialist. I believe we
should give it away" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 1/18).