Depending on what report you believe Conor McGregor v. Floyd Mayweather is either getting very close to happening, or it remains the longest of long shots and is probably never going to happen. I’m in the latter camp. Despite the fact that there was a report in the Irish Sun that a deal was on the verge of being finalized.
I just don’t see it. I mean, on one level, I’d love to see it. But I don’t. For a number of reasons, starting with the fact that it can’t happen without the UFC’s blessing. Conor is under contract to the UFC. And he’s been making some noise about for the right amount of money he’ll do it whether the UFC likes it or not. Dana White’s response? Ehhhh!!!
White told ESPN that would be a very bad play on Conor’s part: “it is what it is now. He came out and said, ‘I can do this without them.’ I guarantee you he can’t do this without us. What I then said was, ‘I’ve always been respectful of Conor, the things he wants to do and everything else. If he wants to go down that road, it will be an epic fall. Everybody knows exactly what that means.”
I can guess. It probably means, Conor is no longer a partner and an owner in the UFC, as he likes to say; in fact, he’d be fired.
So that’s obstacle number one: he’d never say it, but he does answer to the UFC; he’s under contract there. As Floyd likes to tell folks, he doesn’t answer to anyone.
Obstacle number 2: real talk: I get that when there’s this much money at stake, things tend to happen. But how the hell could this ever happen?! Conor has never boxed before. And Floyd has never fought in MMA. And other than making a boatload of jack, why would either one just pick up the other sport. Because that’s what it is, a completely different sport.
Makes about as much sense as Tom Brady suddenly showing up and running the point for the Cavaliers: take Floyd, for instance. He has never fought in MMA. And never will. This is a guy who has always picked his spots, never taken any unnecessary risks and will always do enough to win fights, without putting himself in harm’s way no matter how much it pisses off the paying public. This is, in part, why the guy is undefeated. He’s smart like that. But if he never takes any chances in the ring, we’re supposed to assume he’d be willing to step into the cage? And fight one of the best in the world, at a sport he’s never even tried? Sure, and I’m going to fight the winner!
As for Conor: I love this guy; he’s one of my favorite athletes ever. I couldn’t respect and admire what he’s accomplished any more than I do. I want to make that perfectly clear. I love the guy. But there’s absolutely no way he could beat Floyd boxing him.
Mayweather is unbeaten. He’s one of the best boxers ever. Conor has never boxed before. He has zero chance of beating Floyd. Zero. Short of Conor training for the next five years in boxing, and waiting for Floyd to age out, he’d have no shot whatsoever.
So this is the longest of long shots. The only reason I don’t say there’s no way this could ever happen is because when there’s this much money at stake, there’s always a chance it could. And both these guys are businessman, so there’s always a small chance. If they box, there’s almost no risk to Floyd, so for the right money, he’d do it.
And if you’re Conor and he can get bleep you money, he might be willing to do it even if he has no chance of winning the fight.
Two totally different sports. So no, I don’t think it’s close to happening, nor do I think it will ever happen. And certainly not without Dana White’s blessing. Unless Conor can get $100m, get shutout in the fight and then just walk away from both sports altogether.