When this fight was announced I was hyped up just like everyone else, Conor McGregor the double champion in UFC switching over to boxing to fight the undefeated Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather Jr. Could this be the guy to finally put a 1 on the end of one of the best records in boxing history?
McGregor’s energy levels displayed both inside and outside the octagon throughout his climb to the top of UFC is what got him the admiration and attention of his hoards of followers both here in the UK and the US. Throughout the press conferences with Mayweather he dominated the verbal sparring as he was used to doing over at UFC. Mayweather wasn’t used to being on the receiving end of this kind of verbal onslaught and it may have hurt his pride at the time, but in the long run it’s he who will have a pristine unmatched 50-0 record in boxing and a lot more money to go with it.
Mayweather embraced the villain character bestowed upon him during the later stages of his career. No one could beat him and people couldn’t stand it. Instead of trying to win the approval of the audience he would intentionally infuriate them with his decadent arrogance in an attempt to conjure up the ‘any publicity is good publicity’ spell that would encourage people to buy the fight to cheer against him.
It worked, people paid to watch Mayweather dip, dive and dodge anything that was thrown at him. The likes of Oscar De La Hoya, Juan Manuel Marquez, Shane Mosley, Victor Ortiz and even Manny Pacquiao were barely able to put a scratch on him as he demonstrated defensive masterclass after defensive masterclass against the best the game had to offer and at the same time reaching the highest figures in pay per view boxing ever seen before.
That’s why I think if Mayweather is beaten by McGregor it will be the greatest sporting upset of all time. A boxer who can legitimately claim to be one of the best of all time with 49-0 record going up against someone who has never had a professional boxing bout. Yes, McGregor is younger and the better all-round fighter and could literally murder Mayweather in the octagon, but that’s not the fight taking place on the 26th of August for obvious reasons. Freddie Roach, former trainer for Pacquiao and De La Hoya said the transition for McGregor would take three years before he could actually compete.
And the thing is, Conor knows he hasn’t got a chance. One of the first things he said during the opening press conference in Toronto was “I’m set to quadruple my earnings”. This is the reason he has agreed to fight Mayweather now, because the pay out will be like nothing he has ever seen before. All he has to do is go 12 rounds with a guy not known for his powerful punches and he will be richer than he could ever have imagined.
I also don’t believe Mayweather would have agreed to a fight if it was someone who had the slightest chance of beating him. With 49-0 he can rest easy knowing he’s never lost a professional bout. Now though he is able to turn that uneven 49 into a wholesome 50 against an inexperienced fighter while at the same time getting paid a disgusting amount of money, and who can really blame him for coming out of retirement for that?
The promoters are doing their best to advertise this as a fight that is not set in stone, but just by watching some of Mayweather’s recent bouts its hard to imagine Conor will get any meaningful shots on the 40 year old, even in 15 rounds. Unlike the Klitschko v Joshua fight, this bout features two clowns who will do literally anything on stage to create hype around the fight because they know at the end of the day if you pay to watch them, it’ll be money in their pockets.
I’ll be sure to watch the highlights the following day but I will restrain myself from falling into the trap set by the broadcasters of the fight, who will do their best from now until then to claim this really could be an upset. I for one hope that McGregor ruins a record belonging to a man that influences people to love money above all else and has a long history of domestic abuse, but unfortunately I just can’t see it happening.