By: Sean Crose
First things first – there’s a lot of gloating and mockery going on now that Conor McGregor has lost another fight. That’s understandable. McGregor wasn’t interested in making friends when he was on top of the world and there’s a flip side to every coin. Here’s the thing, though – McGregor is gracious in defeat. That’s something some of today’s top boxers could and should take note of (we’re looking at you, Deontay Wilder and Vasyl Lomachenko). Having said that, it’s clear McGregor is now a fighter past his prime. And, like it or not, that means there’s some boxing news connected to his defeat at the hands of Dustin Poirier Saturday evening.
For apparently all that talk of McGregor lacing the boxing gloves back up to face Manny Pacquiao was more than just talk. It looks like there really were plans for the two men to meet in the boxing ring. Now that Conor has again lost in grand fashion in the octagon, however, another go in the boxing ring suddenly makes a lot less sense than it did before Saturday night. Not that it ever made much sense to begin with – other than financial sense. The WBC might well have made a title of some kind for Pacqiuao-McGreor (I mean, why not at this point?), but McGregor really had (or has) no business boxing against someone of Pacqiuao’s caliber.
It’s understandable that Manny at his age and at this point in his career wants another huge check. It’s also understandable that McGregor would want another boxing sized paycheck after his novelty fight with Floyd Mayweather in 2017. But Manny is not Floyd. Manny is wonderful outside the ring, but still vicious inside it. If he could drop a prime Thurman, imagine what he’d do to a tarnished McGregor, who at this point might even want to consider how much more damage he’s willing to take in the octagon. This is no knock on the UFC. I’ve no doubt McGregor would twist Manny into a pretzel in a mixed martial arts contest. But boxing is what we’re talking about here, because boxing is where the money is right now. And, as of this weekend, a potential Pacquiao-McGregor fight just went from silly to ridiculous (and possibly quite dangerous).
At any rate, say what you will, but McGregor is a legend in his own sport and should be wished the best should he decide to continue. Now that things appear to be moving on, however, word is arriving that Pacquiao might be considering facing none other than young hotshot Ryan Garcia next. That’s a battle that, on the surface of things, at least, seems close to as eyebrow raising as a Manny and Conor throwdown. It’s clear Pacquiao wants to cash in however, as his career winds down, and that Garcia may just be that hungry for greatness. May the best man win, should the match actually go down.
The promotion behind it certainly will.