Boxers Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Boxers Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Mayweather-Pacquiao tops unbelievable Saturday sports lineup

The fight, the Derby, the playoffs, the draft - Saturday in sports has something for everyone

By Tim Reynolds, The Associated Press

The most-anticipated fight of all time. The best-known horse race. The premier baseball rivalry. The NFL draft.

And those are just the highlights.

Super Saturday — perhaps a day unlike any other in the history of sport — awaits.

Stock the refrigerator, replace the remote batteries, get the weekend errands done early, invite your friends, fire up that grill and if you’re very fortunate, confirm those flights. For the sports consumer, an amazing number of options will be available.

From the Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight that could generate $400 million and topple every known record in boxing history, to the 141st edition of the Kentucky Derby, to the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox colliding for the 2,142nd time to the NFL draft’s finishing rounds and so much more, it’s a sports enthusiast’s dream.

The fight in Las Vegas is overshadowing all, with good reason.

“I don’t plan on being there,” said Masters champion Jordan Spieth, “but I may be.”

Here’s the translation. Spieth is playing in the Match Play Championship at San Francisco — another really big event that won’t generate much of a blip this weekend because of everything else happening in the sports world. If he’s ousted before Saturday, his consolation prize is a trip to Vegas.

“There are tickets,” Spieth said.

Tickets, yes — ones he doesn’t want to use, but at least he has them. Most people didn’t have a chance at getting into the MGM Grand this weekend, and some deep-pocketed folks have spent more than $250,000 for a pair of prime seats.

“I’ve never seen anything like this in my life,” said Freddie Roach, Pacquiao’s trainer.

He meant the spectacle surrounding the fight.

He could have just as easily been talking about the worldwide hubbub of what awaits on Super Saturday.

“It’s time to fight now … the biggest fight in boxing history,” Mayweather said.

___

THE FIGHT

The pay-per-view in the U.S. for Mayweather-Pacquiao will cost around $100 to watch in your home, although at least one company is offering to comp the purchase for new subscribers to their service.

There are plenty of other options.

Pacquiao fans will be paying $34 apiece for a seat at Skinny Mike’s Sports Bar in Manila — on Sunday morning there, remember.

Front-row seats to watch from a casino are online for about $200, though that casino is actually in Hammond, Indiana, and not Las Vegas.

And in New York, you and 10 of your friends can watch at a club for $3,000, a steep price but one that includes six bottles of champagne, three bottles of liquor and platters of nachos, sliders, chicken fingers and pizza.

___

THE DERBY

A field of 20 will run for the roses at Churchill Downs, and while the Kentucky Derby might not be the best race of the year, it is certainly the most anticipated, unless a Triple Crown hopeful emerges.

About $125 million was bet on the Derby last year, more than 160,000 fans are expected at Churchill and it’s not implausible to think — based on recent years — that 15 million or so will watch on television in the U.S. alone.

“It has become such an event,” Eclipse Award-winning trainer Todd Pletcher said.

And to think, it’s just part of the show on Saturday.

___

MORE CHOICES

NASCAR has qualifying at Talladega on Saturday, no small event on its schedule either. There’s an LPGA tournament, plus Detroit and Kansas City are squaring off in a matchup of two of baseball’s best teams early this season.

Yes, those will appeal to auto racing, golf and baseball fans.

But to those who love the magnitude of over-the-top events, they won’t compare to the big show in Vegas.

“They may not follow sports much but they like the big events,” said Stephen Espinoza, executive vice-president and general manager for Showtime Sports. “And this is a big event.”

___

AROUND THE WORLD

The Mayweather-Pacquiao fight will be broadcast in at least 52 countries, and who knows how many will be able to access it online globally.

But there’s some other big events around the globe Saturday as well, although again, they’ll all likely pale in comparison.

The European Rugby Champions Cup Final between a pair of French clubs will be going on, Real Madrid will face Sevilla in a potentially very big Spanish soccer match, and the women’s singles and men’s doubles world champions in table tennis will be crowned in China.

___

THE PLAYOFFS

LeBron James will have Saturday off — he and the Cleveland Cavaliers won’t be playing again until Monday, so you know he’ll likely be watching this fight someplace.

The NHL playoffs will be going on, with Washington and the New York Rangers playing Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series. Depending on what happens in other games, the NBA might have nothing scheduled that day, which would only give fans and players more time to enjoy everything else.

There’s also a chance the NBA could see one or two Game 7s to end the first round.

___

THE NFL DRAFT

Finally, there’s the big event of the NFL off-season — the draft, with the final four rounds coming on Saturday. It starts Thursday night, then resumes with rounds two and three on Friday.

This weekend the mighty NFL feels like an appetizer.

The last pick in the draft gets the title of “Mr. Irrelevant.”

Given all going on in the sports world on Saturday, that may never be more appropriate.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Coaches with the Juan de Fuca Minor Hockey association have had to get creative during their weekly practices to keep players interested and improving their skills without physical contact. (Damian Kowalewich photo)
West Shore minor hockey coach shares what it’s like on the ice without parents, fans

Most practices consist of relay races, goalie shots and passing drills

The Songhees Wellness Centre is a symbol of First Nations strength in the region. Representatives of local First Nations will soon play a greater role in decision making and governance relating to the Capital Regional District. (Courtesy Royal Roads University)
Capital Regional District to add First Nations representatives to advisory committees

Board approves bylaw, looks forward to Indigenous input on future decisions

Central Saanich will investigate ways in which the municipality along with funding partners Sidney and North Saanich can financially support the Panorama Recreation Centre. (Black Press Media File)
Central Saanich to spell out options for financially supporting Panorama Recreation Centre

Municipality looks for best use of COVID-19 restart grant worth some $3.5 million

Willow, a kitten belonging to a Victoria family, was rescued by firefighters on Thursday after she got stuck in a basement drain pipe. (City of Victoria/Twitter)
Victoria kitten stuck in basement drain pipe rescued by firefighters

Willow the cat on the mend, owner feeling ‘enormous gratitude’

(Black Press Media file photo)
Blue-green algae bloom confirmed in Elk Lake, water-based activities not recommended

Blue-green algae can be lethal to dogs, cause health issues for humans

Justin Kripps of Summerland and his team have competed in Olympic action and World Cup competitions in bobsleigh. (Jason Ransom-Canadian Olympic Comittee).
QUIZ: Are you ready for some winter sports?

It’s cold outside, but there are plenty of recreation opportunities in the winter months

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19: Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Anita Anand said she understands and shares Canadians’ concerns about the drug company’s decision

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will harm struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

B.C. government would have to show evidence a travel ban is necessary

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)
A unique-looking deer has been visiting a Nanoose Bay property with its mother. (Frieda Van der Ree photo)
A deer with 3 ears? Unique animal routinely visits B.C. property

Experts say interesting look may be result of an injury rather than an odd birth defect

Terry David Mulligan. (Submitted photo)
Podcast: Interview with longtime actor/broadcaster and B.C. resident Terry David Mulligan

Podcast: Talk includes TDM’s RCMP career, radio, TV, wine, Janis Joplin and much more

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virtually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Most Read