Mayweather: If I fight, it’s only against Conor McGregor
By Patrick McHugh: Floyd Mayweather Jr. still isn’t sure whether he’ll be returning to the ring to resume his career, but he’s taken the guesswork out of who he’ll be facing if he does choose to come back to the sport in 2016 or thereafter.
Mayweather says the only guy he’ll face is UFC featherweight champion Conor McGregor. He’s not even a boxer, and the only experience he has in fighting is the standup fighting he does during his MMA fights. Mayweather is really hedging his bets by going after a UFC fighter for his next fight.
If Mayweather was an NFL team, he would be targeting the equivalent of an elementary school team for the next game. McGregor is so unskilled in terms of his boxing ability that you can’t even put on the map. He would be a fighter with elementary skills going against a master in Mayweather.
Whether the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight takes place ultimately could come down to whether or not McGregor is given permission by the UFC to fight Mayweather in a boxing event, and if Mayweather can receive the nine-figure payday he wants from one of the networks like Showtime to take the fight. Getting over $100 million for what promises to be a terrible one-sided affair against McGregor seems almost unfair to the network that ultimately agrees to give Mayweather the payday, as well as the fans that will be paying to see it thinking it will be competitive.
“If I do fight, it’s only against Conor McGregor … not against nobody else,” said Mayweather to ESNews (below). “Because this matchup is so intriguing. You have (a boxer) against an MMA fighter — one of the best MMA fighters to ever … stand up and do it. He’s a strong fighter, and when I look at his fights, he’s a little faster than I thought he was.”
McGregor is far from one of the best ever standup fighters in the sport. There has been plenty of others that have looked far better than him. McGregor is more of the flavor of the week for UFC. The top fighters in that sport last only a short period of time before they’re beaten by younger guys with better skills, and then they’re quickly forgotten. They have their 15 minutes of fame and then are pushed to the side by other guys, and the process repeats itself over and over again. McGregor is the hot name right now after his recent match against Nate Diaz, which he lost. McGregor being more popular than Diaz is likely the reason why Mayweather is still fixated in fighting him rather than Diaz.
I don’t think any fan really believed that Mayweather would end up career at 49-0. When he announced he was retiring after his fight against Andre Berto last September, many fans saw it as little more than a vacation for Mayweather for six to twelve months. After resting for the last eight months, Mayweather is making noise about a comeback for win No.50.
What’s surprising to people is Mayweather choosing an MMA fighter rather than a boxer like Gennady Golovkin, who the boxing world would love to see Mayweather fight. Mayweather has already ruled out a fight against Golovkin in strong terms by saying that the Kazahstn fighter needs to move up two divsions to fight a light heavyweight like Andre Ward.
Mayweather’s rationale for Golovkin doing that is because he himself moved up weight classes during his career. The difference between Golovkin and Mayweather’s situation is dramatically different. Mayweather continued to fill out during his career. Golovkin doesn’t have that type of body. He’s a junior middleweight in size, and he doesn’t have the frame to move up to 168 or 175 to fight the bigger fighters like Mayweather is suggesting.
“We probably could break that number,” Mayweather said about him and McGregor breaking the PPV record set by the Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao fight last year in May 2015. “Anything is possible.”
That’s not possible for Mayweather vs. McGregor to break the all-time PPV mark because McGregor isn’t well known like Pacquiao was to the boxing fans. You have to be an MMA fan to know who McGregor is. Besides that, McGregor lost his last fight, and he would have to learn how to box in four to five months to take the fight against Mayweather.
I don’t care how naïve a boxing fans is about the sport; they’re just not going to be foolish enough to think that McGregor can learn a completely different sport in a short period of time so that he can compete against Mayweather. He fans are going to see through Mayweather’s ploy by fighting a boxing novice and stay away in droves rather than throwing away their money on a paying to see a mismatch on PPV between Mayweather and McGregor.
“I’m pretty sure we’re going to have a master plan to make that fight happen,” said Mayweather. “It hasn’t happened, yet, but we locked down some dates, me and my team, me and Al Haymon, me and Leonard Ellerbe. We locked down some dates, in different countries, in different cities in the United States. I think it will be so entertaining, if we can do it. If we can put a boxer with an MMA fighter. I can’t overlook that guy,” said Mayweather.
I think the fans would be more entertained if Mayweather chose to fight Golovkin, the winner of the Shawn Porter vs. Keith Thurman, or a rematch with Pacquiao. However, those fights would involve Mayweather taking some real risks, and he would have to actually earn his money fighting those guys. Mayweather’s perfect ring record would be at risk, and he could wind up at 49-1 instead of 50-0. Perhaps that’s why we’re not hearing anything from Mayweather about wanting to take a risk in fighting one of those guys because there would be so much for him to lose. Those fighters didn’t just take up boxing recently. They’ve been fighting for years since they were young at the sport of boxing. Mayweather could lose, which is perhaps why he’s not looking in the direction of fighting any of them.