Floyd Mayweather Jr. says he’s officially coming out of retirement to fight Conor McGregor
By Allan Fox: Former 5-division world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. (49-0, 26 KOs) says he’s officially coming out of retirement in order to fight UFC star Conor McGregor. Mayweather is imploring the 28-year-old McGregor to sign the contract for them to fight in June. Mayweather is saying it’s official that he’s coming out of retirement, but it looks like it’s just a lot of talk from him. Until McGregor takes the fight with him, it’s not official that Mayweather is coming out of retirement. Will the UFC allow McGregor to fight outside of their sport? That is the big question.
Of course, coming out of retirement to fight a person with no actual boxing skills like McGregor is a different story than coming out of retirement to fight someone like Gennady Golovkin. Mayweather might as well say he’s still retired but just looking to take an exhibition type of fight against McGregor, because that’s what it shapes up to be. Sadly, the Mayweather-McGregor fight would count as Mayweather’s 50th win if he defeats McGregor.
However, Mayweather’s news announcement of him resuming his boxing career is likely to be little more than an empty statement, as McGregor still likely needs permission from his UFC bosses for him to fight Mayweather in a non-UFC fight inside of a boxing ring, and it does not appear that they’re going to let him.
Even if the Mayweather-McGregor fight takes place, it’s going to be a likely mismatch with him toying with a fighter with no background in the sport of boxing. You might as well call the fight an exhibition match because it’s hardly a fair fight. Mayweather might as well be calling out New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for a fight. Knowing casual fans, there probably would be a lot of interest in a mismatch between Mayweather and Tom Brady. Mayweather vs. McGregor is no different. McGregor has no boxing skills to speak of. Without McGregor having to prove himself against another top fighter in the sport, it’s hard to understand why any state boxing commission would let the Mayweather-McGregor fight take place.
Mayweather said this to the media last Friday night in Liverpool about him officially ending his retirement:
“Now Conor McGregor, I’m officially coming out of retirement just to fight Conor McGregor,” said Mayweather. I don’t wanna hear any more excuses about the money. Oscar De La Hoya, he was the A-side, I was the B-side. I didn’t cry, I didn’t complain. I beat him and I became the A-side.”
McGregor’s situation is different than when Mayweather fought De La Hoya. McGregor isn’t a boxer, and he clearly doesn’t have a future in boxing. This is obviously just a one and done type of fight for McGregor. For that reason, McGregor needs to get the biggest payday possible if his UFC management allows him to take the fight with Mayweather. Under the best possible scenario, the UFC goes ahead and grants McGregor his wish to fight Mayweather. McGregor will get easily beaten by Mayweather and likely stopped at well before the 12th round.
After a loss to Mayweather, McGregor is probably not going to be able to get the fans interested in him facing another boxer. It’ll be a big joke if McGregor keeps calling out fighters, and the fans won’t likely want to waste their hard-earned money at seeing him get bounced around the ring in a sport that he’s not trained for. That’s why it’s important that McGregor get as big a split of the revenue for the Mayweather fight as possible. But if Mayweather gives McGregor the purse split that he wants, then he won’t be making a huge profit for the fight like he clearly wants.
“When I faced Arturo Gatti, I went to his turf and he was the A-side I was the B-side,” said Mayweather. “I beat him and I didn’t cry or I didn’t complain. Sign the paperwork with the UFC so you can fight me in June, simple and plain. Let’s fight in June. You’re the B-Side, I’m the A-side,”
It’s sad to see Mayweather reduced to pleading with an MMA fighter to face him in the boxing ring. It makes Mayweather look bad in my view. I don’t think this is a good look for Mayweather’s legacy. For him to be pushing hard to fight a guy from another sport in a boxing match. I think it looks bad.
Some fans think Mayweather has lost his nerve when it comes to fighting guys from his own sport. They think Mayweather doesn’t want to come back and fight an actual boxer, because the fans would quite rightly expect Mayweather to fight WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith Thurman, Saul Canelo Alvarez or Gennady Golovkin. Those are all fights that Mayweather could lose and lose badly. Even if Mayweather somehow beat those guys, he would have to take a lot of hard shots from them. Those aren’t unskilled boxers. Those aren’t novices in the sport like McGregor.
They actually know how to fight. In other words, Mayweather wouldn’t have a mismatch on his hands like he will if he fights McGregor. Canelo, Thurman and Golovkin would be looking to take Mayweather’s head off with every punch they throw. If Mayweather backs up to the ropes and plays his shoulder roll game, he’s going to get bombarded with head shots from those guys. It could end badly for Mayweather.
“I’m tired of all this crying about money and blowing smoke up everybody’s a**. If you want to fight, sign the paperwork and let’s do it,” said Mayweather to McGregor.
The real question is how much longer will Mayweather keep calling out McGregor before it finally becomes pathetic and forlorn. It’s already been over a year that Mayweather has been talking about the McGregor fight. Without Mayweather fighting anyone, his popularity is not going to stay high forever if he doesn’t at least fight someone to show that he’s actual fighter and not an aging ex-fighter that is trying to get attention from the media.