Plaintiffs in this case paid to see a boxing match between two of the top fighters in the world, Mayweather and Pacquiao. Each was medically cleared to fight by NSAC physicians before he entered the ring. Ultimately, a three-judge panel declared Mayweather the overall winner of the match, but each of the judges declared Pacquiao the winner of between two and four rounds. And although the match may have lacked the drama worthy of the pre-fight hype, Pacquiao’s shoulder condition did not prevent him from going the full twelve rounds, the maximum number permitted for professional boxing contests. See ABC Regulatory Guidelines, Ass’n of Boxing Comm’ns and Combative Sports (July 27, 2005), https://www.abcboxing. com/abc-regulatory-guidelines/. Plaintiffs therefore essentially got what they paid for—a full-length regulation fight between these two boxing legends.
Even though the license approach may not map perfectly onto the allegations in this case, we need not adopt that approach to conclude that Plaintiffs suffered no legally cognizable injury here. Whatever subjective expectations Plaintiffs had before the match did not negate the very real possibility that the match would not, for one reason or another, live up to those expectations.
As the Seventh Circuit explained in Bowers, Formula One racing fans expect that, on any given day, numerous events may prevent a competition with a full complement of twenty cars. See 489 F.3d at 324 (describing “dangerous track conditions, a driver’s sudden illness, an accident in shipping a car to the track, any number of things, including the possibility that, for some reason, a driver might refuse to race” as factors that might result in a competition involving fewer cars). In boxing, too, many factors may prevent a full-length match, or one that is as exciting as fans hope. A boxer might, for example, tear a muscle or foul out in the first round. Or a referee might inadvertently come between the boxers, preventing one from landing a knockout punch. As in Bowers, these are all possibilities that boxing fans can expect. See Castillo, 701 N.Y.S.2d at 424 (describing disqualification as “a possibility that a fight fan can reasonably expect”).