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Mayweather wants Khabib and McGregor in 2019

Floyd Mayweather Jr boxing photo

By Allan Fox: Floyd Mayweather Jr. says he wants to fight UFC fighters Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor in back to back fights in 2019 in boxing matches. Mayweather justifies his choice of fighting MMA fighters Khabib and McGregor by saying that they bring in “crazy numbers” when they fight, and that he’s only interested in facing guys that bring in a lot of pay-per-view buys.

Mayweather’s targeting off unskilled non-boxers Nurmagomedov and McGregor for 2019, means his boxing record will soon be 52-0, because the Nevada State Athletic Commission will probably sanction the fights rather than calling them exhibition matches. These should be considered exhibition matches rather than professional fights in the opinions of many fans, but the Commission will likely sanction them as legitimate fights.

With Mayweather now targeting Khabib then McGregor in 2019, the odd man out is a rematch against Manny Pacquiao. Mayweather had talked about wanting to fight the 39-year-old Pacquiao in a rematch in 2019, but it now looks like that fight is going to need to wait until 2020 for it to take place. The thing is, Pacquiao is getting older, and he might not make it through 2019 without losing once or twice. For Mayweather-Pacquiao 2 to be worth watching, Pacquiao needs to be winning, and it’s doubtful that he’s going to be able to last into 2020 without losing to someone unless he takes soft fights against fodder opposition.

Mayweather’s two fights against Khabib and McGregor will likely need a lot of help by the MMA fans, as the boxing public was turned off by his boring mismatch against Conor last year in August 2017. That fight lacked any sense of drama or entertainment value. For the steep price tag of $100 for the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight, the boxing and MMA public got very little value. The main event was horrible, and the undercard looked like it was done on the cheap with very little in the way of interesting fights. The undercard fights were as follows:

– Badou Jack vs. Nathan Cleverly – mismatch

– Gervonta Davis vs. Francisco Fonseca – mismatch

– Yordenis Ugas vs. Thomas Dulorme – mismatch and boring

– Andrew Tabiti vs. Steve Cunningham – young fighter vs. an old timer = mismatch

“McGregor has been talking that s–t, so it ain’t over,” Mayweather said to TMZ in talking about wanting to fight a rematch against McGregor in 2019. ”After me and Khabib lock up, then me and McGregor are going to lock up again.”

At 41, after a great career in boxing, this is what Mayweather is reduced to. Instead of getting out of the sport with class, Mayweather now combs the UFC ranks, looking for popular guys for him to beat inside the boxing ring without giving them a handicap by allowing them to at least kick or knee. It’s kind of sad. I know that Mayweather is making a lot of money for these mismatches against MMA fighters, but it’s still sad to see what he’s become. You have to wonder how long Mayweather will keep this kind of thing up. I wish I could say that his fights against Khabib and McGregor will be the end of his selecting of UFC fighters for boxing matches, but I don’t think it will. As long as the fans are willing to pay to see these novelty fights, Mayweather will likely continue to do them until he starts losing, and even then, I think he would still continue to take part in them. The fans will probably have to stop buying them before Mayweather stops.

It looks bad the way that Mayweather is combing the MMA ranks, selecting wrestler types to fight instead of facing boxers. Although the MMA fighters like McGregor and Khabib are given training on their striking skills, most of the stuff they do is ground stuff. They do a lot of wrestling and submission holds on the UFC. Neither of them are quality stand up fighters. I mean, you can’t throw McGregor and Nurmagomedov in with even an amateur boxer and expect them to win. Even if you matched them against an amateur boxer that was three to four weight classes lighter than them, they would still likely lose badly. Putting McGregor and Nurmagomedov in with Mayweather is grossly unfair, and it’s a poor product for the boxing and MMA fans to have to pay to see this. Fans can do what they want with their money obviously, but it gives the sport of boxing a black eye for Mayweather to be fighting guys like McGregor and Khabib, who have no background for this type of fighting, under the rules of boxing.

”They say, ‘Why do you keep fighting all these MMA guys?’ Man, listen. Me and Khabib are going to do crazy numbers,” Mayweather said. ”Me and McGregor are going to do crazy numbers. I only clash with guys that do crazy numbers. I’m ready to go out there and get the job done and entertain, because me and McGregor was real entertaining. I gave the people what they wanted to see,” Mayweather said.

What Mayweather is basically saying is that his comeback fight won’t be against a legitimate fighter in 2019. You can’t count Khabib and McGregor as legitimate boxers, because neither of them has any experience in boxing. They both look like wrestlers when they move around the ring, and they don’t have the skills to give Mayweather or any world class fighter a test. If you stuck McGregor and Nurmagomedov in with minimumweight (105 lbs) fighters at the pro level in boxing, they would still likely lose badly. It doesn’t require someone like Mayweather to beat the likes of McGregor and Nurmagomedov inside a boxing ring in my view.

Absolutely, both of them I’m going to fight,” Mayweather said when asked if he’s going to fight Khabib and McGregor in 2019. ”A lot of people didn’t think me and McGregor was going to fight. The thing with Mayweather-McGregor, I was glad that it happened, because that made the UFC go up a notch. Then you look at what Khabib and McGregor did. I’m pretty sure they did great numbers. So all I’m doing is keeping combat sports alive. That’s what it’s about. All I can say is Mayweather-Khabib in 2019,” Mayweather said.

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