Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor’s Saturday night showdown is expected to decimate all previous combat sports pay-per-view records, but not everyone who watched paid to do so.
Illegally streaming sporting events is common practice, but the number of people who streamed this Mayweather vs McGregor blockbuster is pretty incredible. According to content-security vendor Irdeto (via Variety), illegal steams of the broadcast were hosted by 239 sources. These streams were viewed by a baffling 2.93 million people worldwide. According to Irdeto, 67 of the illegal streams provided online came from well-known streaming sites, though other streams were hosted by sites like Facebook, YouTube, Periscope and Twitch.
According to the piracy tracking firm Tecxipio, this isn’t where the trouble ended for the Mayweather vs McGregor broadcast and those with interest in assuring it wasn’t watched without being paid for. Apparently, the fight was downloaded by some 445,000 internet users immediately after it had ended.
Needless to say, if it weren’t for illegal streams and downloads, those with interest in Mayweather vs McGregor could have made a lot more money.
Official PPV numbers for the fight have not yet been revealed, but as Variety reports, Fathom Events’ theatrical distribution of the blockbuster “money fight” raked in $2.6 million from a whopping 534 theaters.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/28/2017.