Floyd Mayweather vs. Himself: The Octagon Theory
By: James Risoli
What makes a person who they are? What propels and motivates us to do the things we do? More specifically, why do fighters have such a hard time in the twilight of their careers with hanging up their gloves, unable to walk off into the sunset, after such an arduous journey which often times consists of unforgiving years of blood, sweat, and tears?
If one was to look up the word fighter in the dictionary the definition is one that any person that ever lived would know does not encapsulate it’s real world meaning. A fighter by any sense of the word is someone who challenges themselves. Who goes beyond their normal limits to achieve success in whatever endeavor they are trying to complete. A fighter may not always seek out but will always stand up to challenges and tribulations put forth or laid out before them. All fighters, especially those in the fight game, need to be able to know that the person staring back at them is the same person they believe themselves to be in their heart of hearts.
For those of us that do not know Floyd Mayweather, the man has been a fighter in every sense of the word way before any serious consideration was given to it becoming his profession. Born on February 24th 1977 in Grand Rapids Michigan and then moving at a very early age to the Hiram Square neighborhood of New Brunswick, New Jersey. Mayweather learned about the sometime all too familiar hardships of life at an early age in dealing with poverty and drugs, including a drug addicted mother. Mayweather would later say, “When I was about eight or nine, I lived in New Jersey with my mother and we were seven deep in one bedroom and sometimes we didn’t have electricity. When people see what I have now, they have no idea of where I came from and how I didn’t have anything growing up.” Mayweather’s story however, is one of a more personal nature and perhaps one that would be better told by himself than this author. However, it is important to mention because it bears significance to the “term” fighter. His story could possibly bare some insight into some of his current state of affairs and those future decisions and or plans that may be taking shape or unfolding in his mind’s eye.
By most accounts and for all intents and purposes, Floyd Mayweather has achieved everything there is to achieve in boxing. In a career that spanned two decades Mayweather has done what only one other person could, that being Rocky Marciano. 50 times Floyd Mayweather entered the ring and 50 times Floyd Mayweather’s hand was raised in victory. During his career, he has held multiple world titles in five weight classes and the lineal championship in four of those. In 2016, Mayweather was ranked as the best pound for pound fighter in the past 25 years by ESPN. He is one of the most marketable pay per view fighters of all time, as well as, one of the highest paid athletes in the world. So, the real news and noteworthy question of the day is, why after all this is Mayweather talking about the UFC and walking in the octagon?
Many people have been asking this particular question. Most people think the idea is outrageous, if not borderline crazy, or an actual joke. A statement muttered in jest. However, I for one do not believe that to be the case. Although not the norm, it is not completely uncommon for fighters to attempt a chance at crossing over from discipline to discipline. All one would have to do is just look to Floyd’s most recent and last opponent, Conor McGregor, who tried to accomplish this exact same feat. So, once again, why then is Mayweather entertaining this idea? Why after all the victories and all the achievements is it possible that this is in all actuality a real plausible possibility? Simple, because for the fighters we love and adore, those that bleed and train for the fans to see, cheer, and adore the answer is quite simple. All one would have to look at is the meaning of the word fighter.
Boxing vs. MMA, Why Crossover Fights Rarely Go Well
By: Jose Cuevas
We were treated to the first MMA versus Boxing superfight in Conor McGregor versus Floyd Mayweather back in August of 2017. Many experts argued the fight was a blatant cash grab, a farce, and even a circus.
The fight illustrates the challenge that comes along with making a fight between a Mixed Martial Artist and a Boxer. They are cousins of one another, but they are two completely different disciplines.
One may think an elite Mixed Martial Artist should, key word should, be able to hang in the ring with an elite boxer. That proposition is absurd, mainly due to the fact that Boxers must account for only using their fists in combat. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean that one form of combat is more than the other. Boxers must master controlling the distance between themselves and their opponent, use of their footwork to properly leverage all of their punches, learn to counter effectively while slipping or catching punches, etc… While mixed martial artists must try and master as many disciplines as possible.
How many times in the cage have we seen individuals proficient in wrestling or judo dominate strikers in the cage? Mixed Martial artists, to their credit, have the difficult task of being prepared for every scenario, they need to be good strikers, kickboxers, wrestlers, and submission specialists. This is why Conor McGregor lost against Floyd Mayweather. Floyd had decades of experience mastering footwork, mastering counterpunching, and mastering the sport of boxing…while Conor was proficient at best but not a master at the highest level.
Think about multitasking…MMA is the perfect form of multitasking when it comes to combat sports. While an MMA fighter is on his feet he’s thinking about what punches to land, possible takedown attempts, kicks, flying armbars, etc…the brainpower and strategy that is required to be aware of so many different variables is remarkable. Boxing exists in a controlled environment where fighters have to only worry about punches, but in only worrying about punches they use the rest of their body to maximize their punches which makes the sport unique and difficult to master at the highest level.
Imagine placing the Chess world champion in a match of Chinese checkers against the world champion, it may not make for a competitive match as the Chess expert has had years of experience mastering his/her craft in their controlled environment, while the Chinese checkers expert has done the same in their own respective controlled environment. Therein lies the key…the sports are executed in their own specific controlled environment. This isn’t the Matrix where you can plug into a program and just learn it, it takes time and lots of it.
I was recently covered Bellator 194 where Heather “The Heat” Hardy fought Ana Julaton. Hardy easily won the bout by working as hard as possible to keep the fight on her feet. Hardy is a former undefeated boxer and world champion, she undoubtedly made her mark in boxing and now hopes to make her mark in MMA. However, in her previous fight she was thoroughly annihilated by a debuting mixed martial artist.
Kristina Williams outclassed Hardy with head kicks and leg kicks and busted her wide open. Hardy was not prepared for the onslaught as Williams was an expert with her kicks and could hold Hardy’s boxing skills at bay. The fight was stopped in the second round as Hardy was bleeding profusely and she could no longer defend herself. This is a perfect example of what happens when you drop a boxer in the realm of MMA with a well-rounded mixed martial artist, it’s a whole different ball game.
Rumors have been circulating that Floyd Mayweather will enter the Octagon. That is a disastrous idea as Floyd is a master of boxing, but not a master of fighting in the uncontrolled controlled environment of MMA. However, don’t be fooled, Mayweather is a meticulous matchmaker and he may enter the cage against an opponent with little to no cage experience like CM Punk, which would level the playing field significantly. However, if he is matched with a Mickey Gall, a debuting professional MMA fighter with a lot of experience….expect him to suffer the same fate as Heather Hardy.
MMA and Boxing are too different, it will require meticulous matchmaking to make a newcomer look good in either realm. Don’t let your eyes fool you they may be combat sports…but the controlled environment of either changes the dynamic completely. The sooner we realize that the sooner we learn to respect both sports and appreciate them for what they offer to the overall realm of combat sports. In realizing that MMA and Boxing are different we can stop this madness of MMA and Boxing crossovers as rarely will you get your money’s worth…you may be getting all the spectacle you desire, but that’s a topic for another article…
Dana White Says Talks of a UFC Deal with Floyd Mayweather are Real; Mayweather Says He “Could” Do It
By Bryanna Fissori
What happens when you put to marketing geniuses in the same mass media headline? The crowd goes wild. And both Dana White (UFC President) and Floyd Mayweather Jr sure know how to work a crowd.
With the statement “Talks about a UFC deal with Floyd are real,” fans and fighters are left to fill in the blanks with assumptions and theories. The guessing game can be entertaining. Both White and Mayweather are known to choose their words carefully to promote the most amount of controversy possible.
“We’re talking to Floyd about doing a UFC deal,” White said in an interview with ESPN. “It’s real. He was talking about [boxing] Conor McGregor. Was that real? Have you heard Floyd talk about many things that aren’t real? He usually tips his hand when he’s in the media, and then that sh*t ends up happening. We’re interested in doing something with Floyd. Everything is a realistic possibility. Mayweather vs. McGregor f*cking happened. Anything is possible.”
Mayweather has rebutted the statement from White, asserting that he will not be entering the Octagon, but if he wanted to he could. And he could make a billion dollars doing it. He is not interested in competing in boxing or MMA.
“Exactly what I said is this: If I could make over a billion dollars before, I could do it again,” Mayweather said in an interview with FightHype. “If I chose to get in the UFC and fight three fights or fight four fights and then fight Conor McGregor, I could make a billion dollars. Which I can. I could do it in three fights or even four fights — I could make a billion dollars. If I choose to get in the Octagon and fight.”
“We just don’t know what the future holds for Floyd Mayweather,” Mayweather said. “And I don’t look forward to getting back in a boxing ring, that’s what I don’t look forward to. I’m just saying I could — I’m not doing it — but I’m saying what I could do to make a billion dollars quick, if I wanted to do that. That’s what I was saying. I never said I was gonna fight in the UFC. I didn’t say that. I said if I wanted to and what I could. Could and would do is different things. I’m not gonna do it, though.”
Keeping in line with the rest of the speculations, could it be that Mayweather is just staying ready in case April 15th crushes his empire with taxes? Could this be his backup plan if the money from his bout with Conor McGregor doesn’t sufficiently fund his retirement account?
Another consideration is that Mayweather, like Dana White, is a professional promoter and a successful one at that. White has already confirmed that the UFC will be hosting boxing events under the name “Zuffa Boxing.” It may be a lot for White to handle both the Octagon and the ring. Could Floyd be joining the payroll as a promoter rather than a competitor?
White and Mayweather are two very powerful men in the combat sports industry. White stated in an interview last month, that he would be speaking to a number of influencers in the boxing community as Zuffa Boxing comes to fruition. For now fighters and fans will continue to speculate as we wait to see where the pieces fit together.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Pacquiao, Mayweather, McGregor, Ali, Klitschko, and more…
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of November 28th to December 5th; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Pacquiao Hopes to Promote Boxing in China
Manny Pacquiao is hoping to develop professional boxing in China by establishing a boxing academy there.
He recently signed an agreement with China’s Dancing Sports to help “attract, train and develop Chinese world class boxers and to regularly promote professional boxing matches all over China.” Pacquiao stated, “Yesterday, I met with President Xi and Prime Minister Li Keqiang, and I am glad that the high level relationship between China and the Philippines is going further. President Xi’s Belt and Road initiative is very important, it will help countries along exchanges and cooperation at all levels across borders,” Pacquiao said.
“It is not difficult to see that the signing of this comprehensive agreement is exactly the implementation of the two top leadership initiatives of China and an important action to promote cooperation between China and the Philippines,” the senator added.
Read more at: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/sports/boxing/635350/pacquiao-aims-to-promote-boxing-in-china/story/#undefined.uxfs
Mayweather Says He Carried McGregor, Accuses De La Hoya of Drug Use Again
Floyd Mayweather recently vacationed in China and offered his thoughts on Oscar De La Hoya calling out Conor McGregor.
He stated, “Wasn’t Oscar De La Hoya the same one that was talking about me fighting Conor McGregor? And he was trying to protest and stop the fight?! Now he trying to fight Conor McGregor! Is he a hypocrite or is he back on coke again?
“Man, that boy still snorting them lines!
“Everybody tried to protest the Mayweather-McGregor fight, right? But I’ma tell ya’ll the truth — you know I carried McGregor. You know I made it look good for ya’ll.”
Ali & Holyfield to be Inducted this Friday into USA Boxing Alumni Hall of Fame Inaugural Class
The fledgling USA Boxing Alumni Association will host a gala reception this Friday night (Dec.) 8, highlighted by the induction of the inaugural class of the USA Boxing Alumni Hall of Fame, at the Courtyard by Marriott Downtown in Salk Lake City, Utah.
The reception is being held in conjunction with the 2017 USA Boxing Elite and Youth National Championships and Junior and Prep Open, Dec. 5-9, also held in Salt Lake City.
Created to champion a lifelong, mutually beneficial relations between USA Boxing and its alumni, –boxers, officials, coaches and boxing fans — The Alumni Association connects generations of champions, inspiring and giving back to USA Boxing’s future boxing champions, in and out of the ring.
“The Alumni Association will bring together former boxers, coaches and official who have reached all levels of success in amateur boxing, as well as people who have all over for Olympic-style boxing,” explained Mike McAtee, USA Boxing Executive Director. “This association will help expand our grassroots and create fight champions of USA Boxing and alumni members.”
“The Greatest” and “The Real Deal”, respectively, Muhammad Ali and Evander Holyfield, will be the first boxers inducted into the USA Boxing Alumni Association Hall of Fame, joining two others, veteran coaches Roosevelt Sanders and Tom Coulter, also being inducted as charter members.
The late Ali is the lone three-time lineal world heavyweight champion of all-time, who as an amateur (known then as Cassius Clay), captured a gold medal at the 1960 Olympics in Rome.
Holyfield was the first and remains the only undisputed cruiserweight and heavyweight world champion. At the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, Holyfield won a bronze medal as a light heavyweight, after a he suffered a questionable disqualification in his semifinals match. Earlier this year, Holyfield started his promotional company, The Real; Deal Boxing.
A 1993 USA Boxing Hall of Fame inductee, Roosevelt coached the U.S. Marines boxing team in 1975-1978 and 1988-2000. He also served as assistant coach on the USA Olympic boxing teams in 1984 and 1992.
Coulter has been a boxing coach for more than 62 years, continuing to conduct boxing clinics today around the glove. In addition to coaching the iconic 1988 USA Olympic boxing team, which captured eight individual medals, he was a consultant for the 1996 squad that won 14 meals. A national boxing champion at Syracuse University, Coulter also coaches the U.S. Army Boxing Team.
International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee Al Bernstein will serve as Master of ceremonies for Friday’s event. “USA Boxing makes a positive difference in the lives of thousands and thousands of young people ion a daily basis,” the voice of Showtime Boxing said,” and I am so honored to serve as emcee for the inaugural USA Boxing Alumni Association Hall of Fame Reception. This new arm of USA Boxing will be a terrific addition to an already great organization. I look forward to it.”.
Modern Boxers Vitali Klitschko, Erik Morales & WInky Wright Elected to International Boxing Hall of Fame
The International Boxing Hall of Fame and Museum announced today the members of the Class of 2018. Inductees include three Modern category boxers who all enter the Hall in their first year of eligibility; heavyweight champion “Dr. Ironfist” Vitali Klitschko, four-division world champion Erik “El Terrible” Morales and light middleweight champion Ronald “Winky” Wright. Non-participants and observers to be inducted include German promoter Klaus-Peter Kohl and broadcasters Steve Albert and Jim Gray.
“We’re extremely excited about the Class of 2018 and are very much looking forward to paying tribute to the new inductees in Canastota next June,” said Executive Director Edward Brophy.
The 2018 Hall of Fame Induction Weekend will be held June 7-10th in Canastota, NY. Many events in “Boxing’s Hometown” of Canastota throughout the four-day celebration, including a 5K Race / Fun Run, golf tournament, boxing autograph card show, VIP Cocktail Reception, Parade of Champions and the Official Induction Ceremony on the Hall of Fame Museum Grounds, are scheduled. The Hall of Fame Weekend evening events include Friday night’s Fight Night at Turning Stone and Saturday’s Banquet of Champions. Both events will take place at Turning Stone Resort Casino.
The Hall of Fame also released names of posthumous honorees: Sid Terris in the Old-Timer Category; and ring announcer Johnny Addie and promoter Lorraine Chargin in the Non Participant Category. Inductees were voted in by members of the Boxing Writers Association and a panel of international boxing historians. Biographies on the Class of 2018 can be found on www.ibhof.com
Luis Ortiz to Take on Daniel Martz on December 8th
Top-rated heavyweight title contender Luis “King Kong” Ortiz will take on Daniel “The Mountain” Martz in an added 10-round featured bout on a special Friday night edition of Premier Boxing Champions TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS on FS1 and BOXEO DE CAMPEONES on FOX Deportes at Hialeah Park in Miami, Florida on Dec. 8.
The main event of the card features Ahmed Elbiali taking on former world champion Jean Pascal in a 10-round light heavyweight bout. Televised coverage of the 2-1/2 hour show begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT with a battle between unbeaten featherweight prospects Stephen Fulton (11-0, 5 KOs) and Adam Lopez (8-0, 3 KOs) and also features welterweight prospects Bryant Perrella (14-1, 13 KOs) and Alex Martin (13-2, 5 KOs) in undercard action.
Ortiz is returning to the ring one week after the World Boxing Council lifted a sanction that it had imposed against the Cuban heavyweight contender in October. Ortiz was pulled from a match against world champion Deontay Wilder scheduled for Nov. 4, after Ortiz failed a Voluntary Anti-Doping Association drug test. Last week the WBC ruled that Ortiz had failed to disclose two medications that he was taking, which triggered his positive test. He was fined $25,000 for failing to make the disclosure, and re-instated into the organization’s rankings.
That cleared the way for Ortiz to return to the ring, and he will waste no time doing so with a match that he hopes will help propel him toward another world title shot in 2018.
“I’m just thankful to be back in the sport I love so much. I can’t wait to get some action and feel that ring and those gloves tight on my wrist,” Ortiz said. “I’d like to thank everyone, especially my loyal fans, who stood by me and supported me through this rough time. I don’t think it would have been possible without you guys. I’d like to thank the WBC and Mr. Sulaiman for being humane enough to take time for their investigation, and my entire team who never lost faith in me. But most of all I need to thank God because without him there wouldn’t be anything worth living for.”
The 38-year-old Ortiz (27-0, 23 KOs), of Camaguey, Cuba now resides in Miami, Fla., and will be fighting Martz in a 10-round bout in front of his adopted hometown crowd. The hard-hitting southpaw turned pro seven years ago after defecting from Cuba and has since been steadily climbing the heavyweight ladder. He cemented his standing in the division with victories over veteran contenders Bryant Jennings, Tony Thompson and Malik Scott and is currently ranked No. 3 by the WBC. Ortiz hasn’t fought in almost a year, having scored a technical knockout victory over David Allen at Manchester Arena in England on Dec. 10, 2016 in his last fight.
Ortiz-Martz replaces the Chad Dawson-Edwin Rodriguez light heavyweight bout on the card. The match was cancelled after Dawson suffered an injury in training camp.
The 27-year-old Martz (16-5-1, 13 KOs), a 6-foot-7 heavyweight from Clarksburg, West Virginia, has taken on world champion Joseph Parker and contender Bryant Jennings during his five-year professional career. He is coming off a second round technical knockout victory over Tim Washington on Nov. 17.
Professional boxing returned to The Strand Ballroom and Theatre in Providence last night, December 1 for the first time in 20 years and popular Providence featherweight Toka “T-Nice” Kahn Clary didn’t disappoint the large, raucous crowd.
Kahn-Clary (24-1, 16 KOs) turned in a dominant performance, winning by way of a seventh-round technical knockout, over previously undefeated Filipino slugger John Vincent Moralde (19-1, 10 KOs), the WBC Asian featherweight titlist, to capture the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) USNBC featherweight championship.
“Real Deal Championship Boxing V”, presented by Hall of Famer Evander Holyfield’s The Real Deal Boxing, aired live on CBS Sports Network, the undercard was live-streamed on www.TheRealDealBoxing.com. Calling the action were Paulie Malignaggi, Steve Farhood and Barry Tompkins.
The 25-year-old Kahn-Clary, who won the North American Boxing Association (NABA) title in his last fight, used a stiff jab and solid defense to frustrate his opponent early in the fight, setting the pace to take a decisive scoring advantage.
Toka-Kahn came out firing in the fourth round, applying more pressure to take full command, and he never let up. Rapid fire punches by Toka-Kahn, thrown from all angles, repeatedly landed on his overmatched opponent. By the end of round seven it was clear that the end was near for Moralde and it came suddenly when Moralde couldn’t continue anymore.
“This was great tonight,” Holyfield commented about promoting his first show in Providence. “We want Toka to be our first world champion and this performance should put him in good position. It was very important to build his fanbase at home in Providence and we look forward to promoting here in the near future.”
“I’m not a one-punch fighter,” WBA No. 14-rated Toka explained. “I kept walking him down and hit him with some good body shots. I’m not going to call anybody out by name but I’m ready to fight anybody in my weight class.”
“This is such a good feeling. I came here but could have ended up anywhere. I’m truly blessed to be in Providence and have these great fans. I have a great team behind me. I want to fight the best to be the best, it’s the only way to make money and be recognized. I’m ready for anybody!”
The American debut of undefeated Italian cruiserweight Fabio “Stone Crusher” Turchi (13-0, 11 KOs) was a clinic in last night’s co-featured event against Demetrius Banks (9-4, 4 KOs), of Detroit. Turchi patiently applied constant pressure, methodically breaking down the game Banks and hurting his opponent with a flurry of punches in the third round. The end came when Banks failed to answer the bell for round five.
“I’m so happy,” Turchi remarked after the fight. “This was so emotional for me because it was the first time I fought in front of Evander. I’m happy with my performance but I think I could have done better”.
“I felt the heat from the Italian-American fans and I thank them for helping me sustain. I also want to thank The Real Deal Boxing. My next fight will be February 2 at home in Florence, for the European Union title.”
In the CBSSN televised opener, red-hot featherweight prospect made Irvin Gonzalez (8-0, 7 KOs) made the most of his national TV debut, switching freely from orthodox stance to southpaw and back throughout the fight, en route to a sensational third-round knockout of Colombian knockout artist Marlon Olea (13-2, 12 KOs). The lightning-quick Gonzalez, of Worcester, MA, consistently beat his opponent to the punch, and finished off Olea with a straight right to the body to keep his perfect pro record intact. Olea was fighting in the U.S. for the first time.
Lamont Peterson and Errol Spence Jr. Press Conference Quotes
Unbeaten welterweight world champion Errol Spence Jr. and former champion Lamont Peterson went face-to-face for the first time Wednesday at a press conference in Brooklyn to discuss their world title showdown headlining action on Saturday, January 20 live on SHOWTIME. The event is presented by Premier Boxing Champions from Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING®.
SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING coverage begins live at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and will feature undercard attractions that will be announced in the near future.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and TGB Promotions, are priced starting at $50, and are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased at ticketmaster.com, barclayscenter.com or by calling 800-745-3000. Tickets can also be purchased at the American Express Box Office at Barclays Center. Group discounts are available by calling 844-BKLYN-GP. The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast will also be available in Spanish via secondary audio programming (SAP).
Here is what the press conference participants had to say Wednesday:
ERROL SPENCE JR.
“You’re going to see the same Errol Spence that you’re used to. I can’t look ahead because I know how dangerous Lamont Peterson is. I’ve been in training camps with him and I know what he can do.
“I’ve seen too many fighters look down the road and get beat before they get to the big fight. I have to be 100 percent focused and hungry. I’m fully dedicated to this fight.
“Lamont can push me to even greater levels. I feel like he is a better fighter than Kell Brook and has even more heart than Kell Brook and he can bring out the best in me.
“I think it’s going to start out as a boxing match, but as we go on, it’s going to be a dog fight. We both have big hearts. I’ve never known Lamont to turn down any fight. Not a lot of people wanted to fight me. The big names shied away from me but Lamont stood up and said he’d fight me. This is going to be a hard fight.
“I used to watch Lamont and his brother Anthony Peterson before I ever met them. I like their styles, the way they throw body punches and the fundamentals that they learned from Barry Hunter.
“I think I can be known as the best pound-for-pound in the sport, but I have to take it one fight at a time. I want to be the undisputed welterweight champion. That should be everyone’s ultimate goal – to be the best fighter in the sport. But first I have a big test ahead of me January 20.
“This is the business of the sport. I was a young guy when Lamont was giving me advice. Now we’ve gotten to this point. It really shows his longevity in the sport and how I’ve reached the ranks of being a top pro fighter.
“Sparring with Lamont Peterson was really great work. It was a learning experience. I was an amateur so I was going at a fast pace and Lamont was being patient, blocking and countering and picking his shots. He was fighting at a pro pace and I didn’t really understand it until I got farther into my career.
“You’ve seen me and Lamont fight. We’re not in boring fights. We have fan-friendly styles and you’re going to get a really good fight. We have the mentality to really go after it and give it our all to get this win.
“I want the best in this division to all fight each other. It’s time for everyone else to stand up and proclaim that they want to be great. That’s how we get this division to the peak. I don’t feel like waiting to fight the best. I want to prove myself.”
“This is a world title fight and I’m thankful for that. I try not to make too much out of each fight. I just want to take it one fight at a time. I’ve done this for 13 years as a professional. All fights are the same. I’m going to go in there and take care of business.
“As a top fighter, you’re obligated to take what comes on the table. Regardless of who it is. It’s boxing. It’s a sport and we’re competitors. We want to go in there and compete to see who’s the best. We’re going to treat it like business like we always do.
“You already know when I fight, it’s a feeling out process to start, but in my head, I’m ready to go. It’s going to get rough in the trenches and we’ll see who wants it more.
“I knew six years ago when Errol was in my camp that we’d get to this point. I knew he would be a champion. For the most part, I’ve seen him improve and progress throughout the pro ranks and I believe he’s going to keep getting better.
“I don’t pay any attention to the outside noise. I respect everyone’s opinion. I just go out and train to do what I love to do. I do this because I love to box. I’m not here to get on a list. I truly love this sport.
“I can’t worry about people thinking that Errol is the next star in this sport. I believe that, but I can’t worry about it. It is up to me and my team to come up with the right type of strategy and execute it.
“I’m not too worried about figuring out his southpaw stance. I’ve been around long enough and encountered enough southpaws. I’m confident I’ll be able to handle it.
“The size may seem like an advantage for Errol, but it’s up to me and my team to figure out the best way to negate it. I know who I am. I’m a competitive person. Regardless of everything, I’m going to come to win.”
Conor McGregor Rumored to Have Been in an Irish Bar Room Brawl with Gangster
By Bryanna Fissori
No, we can’t even make this stuff up. Well, maybe someone did, but it wasn’t us . . .
MMA Lightweight UFC Champion and 0-1 Pro Boxer Conor McGregor is doing and excellent job of living up to his “Notorious” nickname. The 29 year old has been at the forefront of combat sports media since the late spring when talk of him making a boxing debut against Floyd Mayweather first started to make headlines. The ebb and flow of the media frenzy that follows McGregor is still going strong, now surrounding a number of things including:
· Talks of increased pay for MMA fighters
· Potential boxing match ups
· Rumors of a rematch with Mayweather
· Pushing a referee during a Bellator MMA (another MMA promotion) fight card
· Crossover to WWE professional wrestling
· And most recently . . .
The Bar Room Brawl
Just days ago it was reported that McGregor was in a bar room brawl with some famous Irish gangsters. If you think this sounds like it should be an important scene out of an old-school boxing movie, we agree.
The Black Forge Inn in the Dublin suburb of Crumlin is where the fight was said to have taken place. Some claims have stated that the man assaulted by McGregor was the father of Kinahan lieutenant Graham “The Wig” Whelan. Whelan is one of the country’s most feared gangsters, though there are no specific stats on how many scary gangsters are in Ireland, but it appears that there are a number of them.
The unconfirmed reports that have surfaced across European media outlets claim that senior members of Ireland’s infamous Kinahan crime cartel are seeking retribution against McGregor for the incident.
Police in the area have been informed of the supposed incident, but since no actual reports have been made, there is nothing for them to do.
The Kinahan Crime Cartel and Boxing
The last time the Kinahan gang and McGregor were seen on the same headline is when reports surfaced that 59 members of the cartel were flying into Las Vegas, Nevada to watch McGregor’s boxing match against Mayweather. This excluded members who were still exiled or in hiding.
Ties to boxing are strong in the Kinahan gang. Daniel Kinahan, who is the grandson of cartel founder Christy Kinahan, has been a boxing promoter and manager for some time. The Marbella Gym, which was started by Daniel Kinahan is estimated to be home to 100 or so fighters. Early in 2017 Kinahan decided to take a backseat due to bad publicity and the gym has been rebranded under the name Mack The Knife (MTK).
The “bad publicity” stems heavily from a boxing weight-in event gone bad, when a rival gang showed up with AK47s to take out Kinahan members. There was only one death in the 2016 attack.
Irish fighter, Jamie “The Nuisance” Kavanagh (20-1) was present at that event, weighing in for a fight that would be canceled due to the incident.
The UFC Unconcerned with the McGregor Incident
“I don’t think it’s true,” said UFC President Dana White. “Because if it was true, it would be big. Conor can walk down the street and it’s big news now. If this were true, I just have to believe it would be off-the-charts crazy. If it’s true, we’ll end up finding out. I can’t chase all these things around. If it’s true, we’ll get it figured out and we’ll go from there.”
As far as the UFC is concerned, Conor’s next move should be focusing on a potential fight with interim lightweight champ Tony Ferguson, though there is no official confirmation on the next bout for McGregor.
McGregor Welcoming the Publicity
Though he has neither confirmed nor denied the bar room incident, McGregor did acknowledge it on his social media. Initial news reports claimed that a “celebrity” was involved in the fight. McGregor posted a silent video with his face partially covered by his jacket and simply labeled it “The Celebrity.” He has not made any other public comments referring to the event.
Mayweather-McGregor II? Fool me Once Shame on You, Fool Me Twice Shame on me!
By: Ken Hissner
It’s rumored Floyd “Money” Mayweather and MMA’s Conor McGregor may have a rematch though it’s questionable if McGregor will try boxing again. Since both had big paydays that could change.
Mayweather may know that Chayaphon Moonsri, of Thailand just improved his record to 49-0 this past weekend tying Rocky Marciano’s record and pulling within one win of him. This could bring him “out of retirement” again.
The fight itself between Mayweather and McGregor was Mayweather throwing about three punches around for the first six rounds “carrying” McGregor. In the seventh he started opening up on McGregor ending the bout in the tenth round.
There are more welterweights that could bring a more attractive opponent for Mayweather, 50-0, like a pair of Philadelphian’s in former two division champion Danny “Swift” Garcia, 33-1, and contender “The New” Ray Robinson, 24-2. Even a Garcia and Robinson winner would be attractive.
Shawn Porter, 28-2-1, and Jesse Vargas, 27-2, would also be good opponents. We know he won’t be fighting 2-division champion Terance “Hunter” Crawford, 32-0, at this time but what a match that would be.
Possibly Mayweather would come back at super welterweight and meet WBC champ Jermell Charlo, 30-0. One thing for sure will be Mayweather doing the picking of an opponent if he does fight again!
Mayweather Still In Fighting Shape- Talk of McGregor Rematch
by Bryanna Fissori
Three months into retirement Floyd Mayweather Jr. is reportedly still training “like a maniac” and in fighting shape. His recent training video, recorded in his Las Vegas gym has inspired rumors of a comeback and potential rematch with his most recent opponent, Conor McGregor.
Given the amount of money made by everyone involved with the fight in August, it is not surprising that there is talk of doing it again. The cash is still being counted, but general totals have fight purses at $100 million for Mayweather and $30 million for McGregor prior to accounting for PPV buys, gate sales, sponsorship, etc.
The Mayweather Perspective
Mayweather is 40 years old and boasts an unblemished professional record of 50-0. This is the largest unbeaten winning streak in boxing history, beating out the previous record of 49-0 held by heavyweight Rocky Marciano who passed away in 1969.
This is Mayweather’s third attempt at retirement. He has previously returned to the ring primarily due to financial necessity after running into a number of problems with the IRS and the legal system. Mayweather asserts, that this time he is really done.
“You won’t see me in the ring no more. Any guy that’s calling me out? Forget it. I’m OK. I had a great career. I had a tremendous career,” said Mayweather. “I did walk away from this sport before. Very comfortable. I didn’t have to come back. But we do foolish things sometimes. All of us do foolish things. But I’m not a damn fool. If I see an opportunity to make $300-, $350 million in 36 minutes, why not? I had to do it. But this is the last one. You guys have my word.”
The McGregor Perspective
Conor McGregor is a 29 year old professional MMA fighter competing for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). McGregor’s bout against Mayweather was his boxing debut. He has been very clear that he would gladly rematch Mayweather should the opportunity arise.
In a recent Q&A session McGregor stated, “I’m not calling him out. I’ll sit back. We’ll see how he gets along with this round of money. Maybe I’ll get another call. Originally he was saying an MMA bout next. . . That’s what he said before the fight.”
McGregor is the UFC Lightweight Champion and will most likely have his next competition in the cage, though he has also shown interest in boxing again or spending some time in professional wrestling. Both boxing and professional wrestling have been known to produce solid paychecks in comparison to MMA.
There has also been talk of McGregor talking on former training partner Paulie Malignaggi in a boxing match. It is a match Malignaggi has requested following statements released to the media that McGregor had gotten the best of him during training camp.
Mayweather and MMA
Well, technically if Mayweather was to agree to a bout with MMA rules that wouldn’t have any effect on his assertion of retirement from boxing or his perfect record. The money would be good and the hype would be exciting.
McGregor has stated that he believes Mayweather could compete in mixed martial arts. “He has some very strong tools he could bring into an MMA game for sure.”
One of the most notable crossovers from boxing to MMA was boxer James Toney, who took on UFC fighter Randy Couture in 2010. The match went as expected with Couture out grappling the boxer. Other crossovers that shared as similar fate include Art Jimmerson who faces Royce Gracie in UFC 1 and Ricardo Mayorga who had a series of losses before calling it quits. There are numerous others who have found similar issues with the kicking and grappling aspects of the sport. One of the most recent examples is Bellator fighter Heather Hardy who was unable to outbox Kristina Williams who blooded the boxer with kicks and knees.
The key for Mayweather in an MMA bout would be defending takedowns and watching for kicks and knees, especially given his typical style of playing with his back against the ropes.
McGregor has some proving to do back in the UFC cage and will probably defend his MMA title before any serious considerations of re-entering the ring. In the mean time, Mayweather will count his money and keep training to stay relevant to the masses, teasing fans with a comeback. Is it possible? McGregor may be on to something in his statement that Mayweather’s finances could be the decision maker. Will it be MMA or Boxing? That will likely depend on what the fans are willing to pay the most for.
Attention Pacquiao – Conor McGregor Isn’t A Pinata Filled With Money
By: Sean Crose
Manny Pacquiao – or someone working for Manny Pacquiao – called out Conor McGregor on Pac Man’s Twitter page Thursday. Why? The answer’s pretty simple. McGregor comes across to an accomplished boxer like a cross between a punching bag and an ATM machine. With millions upon millions of dollars to be “earned,” why wouldn’t an over the hill great allow himself to be demeaned by a loud mouthed European and his creepily devoted fan base? All McGregor has to do is sign on the dotted line, the reasoning goes, and the man becomes target practice for your fists. Sure, you may have to break through that goofy John L Sullivan stance he has, but once that’s over and done with, it’s pinata time.
New flash, gang: this sort of thing, while annoying and harmless on the surface, can be very dangerous. McGregor does not (repeat, not) seem like a nice guy – in fact, he’s beloved for pretty much behaving like an ass – but boxing is a dangerous as hell sport, perhaps even more dangerous than mixed martial arts, and no one deserves to be beaten senseless for an easy paycheck. Not even McGregor. Besides, McGregor’s taken two beatdowns as it is in these past two years (from Floyd Mayweather and from UFC star Nate Diaz, respectively) and it still hasn’t made him act like any more of a sportsman (for the record, the Irishman may be a hell of a guy – but he’s a clown in public).
What’s the upside, a fan might ask, of watching McGregor face an aging legend not named Mayweather in the ring anyway? The chance to see McGregor win? Who the hell cares if he wipes out an ancient Oscar De La Hoya (who has also called him out) or a way over the hill Manny Pacquiao? Would anyone believe McGregor if he then said he “conquered” the world of boxing after besting such men? His frat boy cult following might, but they’re apt to believe anything he tells them. Everyone else would simply roll their eyes. And what would happen if McGregor were to once again lose in the ring, which he well might against any boxer of note?
One could only imagine the hit McGregor’s reputation would take if he lost to, say, De La Hoya. The man known as “The Golden Boy” is now forty-four years of age. He hasn’t fought since 2009 and he was beaten so savagely by Manny Pacquiao in his last bout that he literally had to quit on his stool. Throw in a reputation for less than sober living on De La Hoya’s part and you’ve got McGregor looking like the butt of a very bad joke if his boxing record becomes 0-2. And let’s not even get started on McGregor losing to Pacquiao. The Filipino senator is dwarfed by the much bigger McGreogor. He’s also looked so diminished in the ring recently that many, if not most, boxing fans would breath a sigh of relief is the guy just retired.
What exactly would it look like if that version of the fighter known as Pac-Man buzz sawed his way through the UFC star? It might mean a few more big paydays for Pacquiao, but it also might make it difficult for McGregor to save face. Then again, this clearly isn’t a man who is easily humbled, whether he should be or not. Which may be why boxers love to call him out. Sure, McGregor may boast to world of having rejected their “pathetic” overtures, but he also might say yes. There’s a lot of money in boxing, after all. What’s more, there’s been a lot of easy money to be made for certain fighters who have earned reputations for liking to take on soft touches (Adonis Stevenson, and – to some degree – Danny Garcia come to mind). Perhaps McGregor Mania is simply symbolic of a dying era of low risk, high reward nonsense bouts.
Not that McGregor hasn’t proven to be a willing participant. The man appears to see himself as a pseudo deity. McGregor won’t be rising from the dead, though, which is another reason why he, and the fighters who wish to cash in by punching his lights out in a ring, might want to tread lightly.
Mayweather vs. Marciano: By the Numbers
By: Patrick Mascoe
It’s funny how we boxing fans get so consumed with numbers. The idea that Floyd Mayweather could break Rocky Marciano’s record by fighting a 0-0 fighter has many fight fans refusing to give Floyd the recognition he is due. The name Rocky Marciano is iconic in the world of boxing. He reigned as the World Heavyweight Champion from 1952 – 1956, at a time when that truly meant something. During the peak of his career, Marciano was a living legend. He was renowned for his punching power (43 of his 49 wins came by way of KO), stamina, and rock-solid chin. He remains the only heavyweight champion to ever retire undefeated.
The problem with comparing athletes from different generations is that there are just too many intangibles to keep track of. In the 1950’s, corruption in boxing was much more prevalent than it is today. Numerous boxers were directly connected to, or controlled by, organized crime. They were not protected to the degree that fighters are today. At that time, the world only recognized one champion per weight division. Unlike nowadays, when anyone who has ever put on a pair of boxing gloves seems to hold some kind of title.
Today’s athletes are bigger, stronger, and faster than the athletes of yesterday. On May 6th, 1954, Sir Roger Bannister was the first human being to ever run a mile in under four minutes. Now, hundreds of track athletes run the sub-four-minute mile every year, and the same trend can be seen across almost all sports.
Swimmers swim faster, jumpers jump higher, throwers throw farther. Year after year, people continue to break records. That doesn’t necessarily mean that today’s athletes are better. Training, coaching, advances in technique and equipment have also vastly improved. Also, today’s athletes are compensated as entertainers allowing them the financial freedom to train full-time. This in turn has created a larger pool of athletes to draw from than in the past.
When Sir Roger Bannister broke the four-minute-mile he was a part-time athlete. His main focus at the time was Medical School. He never considered running a full-time occupation. Now, track star is a legitimate profession. Just ask Usain Bolt, who is a millionaire many times over.
To be honest, taking an athlete in his prime and comparing him to an athlete from another generation seems highly implausible. Could the 195 lb Marciano of yesterday last twelve rounds against the giants of today, like Anthony Joshua or Vladimir Klitschko? Could Floyd Mayweather at his peak follow the chaotic pace of activity that his predecessors did? Would he hold up physically and mentally if his career spanned two hundred fights like that of Sugar Ray Robinson and Archie Moore? The problem with such hypothetical questions is that they generate hypothetical answers.
So, is it possible to compare fighters from different generations? Yes! All we have to do is examine the numbers and do the math. The first significant number is zero. Both fighters ended their careers undefeated. Marciano retired at the age of thirty-two, while still in his prime. Mayweather, who has always kept himself in great shape, retired for the third time at the age of forty. Call it a draw.
Let’s examine the numbers further. During his career Rocky Marciano defeated four Hall of Fame fighters: Joe Louis, Jersey Joe Walcott, Ezzard Charles, and Archie Moore. During Floyd’s career, he defeated one Hall of Fame fighter and six others who will most likely be enshrined within the next ten years: Arturo Gatti (inducted Dec. 10, 2012) Oscar De La Hoya, Juan Manuel Marquez, Shane Mosley, Miguel Cotto, Canelo Alvarez, and Manny Pacquiao. For those keeping score: Mayweather 7 – Marciano 4. Advantage Mayweather.
If we break down these numbers even further, a lot more is revealed. Of the four Hall of Fame fighters Marciano faced, he had either an age or size advantage over all of them. He was ten years younger than both Joe Louis and Jersey Joe Walcott when they met in the ring. He also faced them literally at the end of their careers. Marciano was the last opponent that either fighter would face before retiring. In his two fights against Ezzard Charles, it was not age but size that gave him an advantage. Charles began his career as a Middleweight, moved to Light Heavyweight after the war, and then moved up to Heavyweight after failing to win the World Light Heavyweight title. Against Archie Moore, Marciano had both an advantage in age and in size. Marciano was six years younger than the thirty-eight year old Moore, who like Charles was a natural Light Heavyweight.
With the exception of his bouts against an undersized Juan Manual Marquez and the worn down thirty-nine year old Shane Mosley, Floyd seemed more willing to fight his HOF worthy opponents on a more even playing field than Marciano. Against Arturo Gatti and Oscar De La Hoya, his only real advantage was his superior skill set. Unlike Marciano, Mayweather did step into the ring against younger competition. Manny Pacquio was two years younger than Floyd, Cotto three years younger and Canelo Alverez was thirteen years younger when they faced off. Once again – advantage Floyd Mayweather.
Another way to compare the two fighters is to use a timeline to examine their progress and level of competition, as they climbed the ladder to boxing supremacy.
#1 -both fighters started their careers facing opponents who like them, were fighting in their first ever professional bout. Both were victorious by knockout in the early rounds.
#18 – in Marciano’s 18th professional fight he faced Polish fighter Harry Haft. Haft entered the ring with a 13-7 record and was knocked out in the 3rd round. Floyd Mayweather’s 18th fight saw him challenge Genaro Hernandez for the WBC Super Featherweight title. Hernandez possessed a 38-1-1 record at the time, but was stopped by Mayweather in the 8th round.
#30 – victory number thirty for Marciano was a unanimous decision win over Ted Lowry; a boxer who had suffered 57 previous defeats. In comparison, Mayweather won a unanimous decision over the 35-2-2 Victoriano Sosa.
#35 – saw Floyd win by TKO in six over the 56-4 Sharmba Mitchell, while Marciano won a unanimous decision over the 11-16-2 Willis Applegate.
#39 – Floyd stops the undefeated Ricky Hatton (43-0) in ten rounds, while Marciano knocked out Lee Savold in six. Savold entered the ring with over 40 losses on his record as well as a draw against the previously mentioned Ted Lowry.
#41 – Rocky Marciano defeated Bernie Reynolds (51-9-1) in the 3rd round by knock out. In Floyd’s 41st fight he defeated Shane Mosley (46-5) by unanimous decision. Based on each fighter’s level of competition – Floyd Mayweather once again comes out on top.
Based on the math, my conclusion is this: Rocky Marciano’s legend has grown to mythical proportions over the last sixty years. However, the reality is that he built his perfect record against a number of fighters with losing records or with double-digit losses on their resume. When facing HOF level fighters, he always entered the ring with a distinct advantage. Rocky Marciano was involved in a number of mismatches throughout his career yet, every single one counted as a win on his record. Floyd was never going to lose to Connor McGregor, just as Rocky Marciano was never going to lose to a fighter with over fifty losses. Over the course of their careers, Floyd Mayweather faced a much higher level of opposition than Rocky Marciano. I’m willing to bet that those same boxing fans who refuse to acknowledge Floyd’s victory over McGregor surely would have counted the loss, had it happened. Floyd needs to be recognized and given the credit he is due. He is the new standard of excellence in boxing today. To say that he is the best of all time is debatable. To say that he is inferior to the great Marciano is not.
Yes, Floyd Mayweather Held Back Against Conor McGregor — And What Else Is New?
By Ivan G. Goldman
I disagree with Jim Lampley’s conclusion that Floyd Mayweather threw some rounds against Conor McGregor last August so he could set up a rematch and another easy payday. The scenario is plausible but almost certainly wrong.
It’s always a little delicious to wonder whether a complex, much bigger story lurks behind what seems so obvious.
That’s why plenty of otherwise sane folks agree with talented crackpot filmmaker Oliver Stone that Richard Nixon, LBJ, the FBI, the CIA, the Pentagon, and oh yeah, the Mafia, all worked together to assassinate JFK and blame it on a hapless Lee Oswald. But enough with science fiction.
One reason Lampley’s idea is actually worth considering is that Floyd calls himself “Money” for good reason. He wouldn’t be terribly opposed to scooping up another few hundred million dollars in exchange for another easy fight. There’s no doubt that in his last outing he wasted rounds just watching his opponent without launching much of an offense.
Yet there’s one big problem with Lampley’s view of events. Doing just enough to win is the way Floyd fights.
The only thing atypical about this one was that he actually went in for the kill and stopped his dog-tired opponent in the 10th. In fact, Mayweather poured on more pressure against McGregor than he usually does.
Cage-fighter McGregor had never fought a pro boxing match in his life and was used to the more abbreviated MMA form. So waiting for him to tire himself out before finishing him off arguably made pretty good sense.
Although most world-class fighters will go for an early knockout if they sense it’s to be had, Mayweather just doesn’t operate that way. If an opponent behaves himself, Floyd tends to make a silent deal that promises not too much violence in exchange for a civilized ending. There’s no reason to be shocked when that’s how the match turns out.
Eleven years ago the totally outclassed Carlos Baldomir was just too slow and heavy-footed to get anything accomplished, yet Mayweather, in complete control, was content to make every round look the same. None was thrilling. Fans not only booed but in many cases walked out early. When’s the last time you saw fans leaving a big pay-per-view championship fight before the final bell? It wasn’t the sport’s finest moment.
Six months later when Floyd defeated Oscar De La Hoya by split decision it was pretty much a repeat of his performance against Baldomir even though the diminished Oscar was approximately three times the fighter Baldomir was.
If you put up the cash to see him take on Andre Berto two years ago in what was advertised as Floyd’s farewell fight, you saw him follow the same plan there too. Sharp, stinging but not overwhelming shots and not much in the way of combinations. All combined with breathtakingly good defense. Robert Guerrero? Canelo Alvarez? Same story.
In all these instances Mayweather promised fireworks and ended up delivering snooze city. Against Manny Pacquiao he followed the formula against basically a one-armed fighter. It was another one of those fights of a century that wasn’t even the best fight that weekend.
Let me point out here that Floyd is in fact a tough, truly gifted boxer, one of the best ever. The man puts in his work in the gym and it shows. Come fight time, he handles whatever’s in front of him. And yes, he has on occasion been in some truly sensational contests. Diego Corrales, Miguel Cotto, and his first outings against Jose Luis Castillo and Marcos Maidana all come to mind. But because few opponents could test him, he generally switched to cruise control as he compiled his record of 50-0, 28 KOs.
So when Lampley or anyone else notes that Mayweather failed to do all he could, my question is this: What’s new?
Ivan G. Goldman’s 5th novel The Debtor Class (Permanent Press, 2015) is a ‘gripping …triumphant read,’ says Publishers Weekly. A future cult classic with ‘howlingly funny dialogue,’ says Booklist. Available wherever fine books are sold. Goldman is a New York Times best-selling author.
Will Dana White and the UFC be the Next Big Players in (Zuffa) Boxing?
By Bryanna Fissori
“I could see bringing boxing under our umbrella and trying to see what we could do with that. I could see doing that.”-UFC President Dana White.
As written about by BoxingInsider.com following Floyd Mayweather Jr fight versus UFC Champion Conor McGregor, there may be something to the “Zuffa Boxing” t-shirt adorned by White during pre-fight interviews.
Zuffa, LLC. sold the UFC to WME-ING last year, though the Zuffa brand is still heavily associated with the promotion.
White was interviewed on the Wall Street Journal’s “Unnamed Videopodcast,” where he was questioned about the possibility of a UFC crossover to boxing. Though vague in his response, White alluded to the fact that it could happen. His answer seemed to have been worded to imply that he had not given serious thought to the concept, but would Reebok already be selling “Zuffa Boxing” shirts if something were not something in the works?
Dana White and Boxing
Leaving the world of MMA for boxing does not seem to be on White’s agenda. “What people don’t understand is first of all, I’m still an owner,” White said. “I still have an ownership position in the UFC. And yeah, I signed a contract, but no contract can keep you anywhere. I could leave tomorrow if I wanted to. I obviously couldn’t go work for somebody else, but I could leave when I want to leave. I don’t want to leave.”
No stranger to the boxing world, White spent a lot of his early combat sports industry career in that sector. White trained in boxing, taught boxing and had his own boxing brand. The Mayweather / McGregor fight grossed in the neighborhood of $600 million. That is certainly enough to grab the attention of new UFC parent company WME-IMG, whose fairly recent acquisition of the company could mean a lot of changes to the structure and operations of the business. Who is to say one of these changes couldn’t include the addition of boxing under the UFC conglomerate.
It is common knowledge that there is a discrepancy between what MMA fighter and boxers are paid. The top purse reported in MMA has Ronda Rousey (UFC 207) and Conor McGregor (UFC 202) tied at $3million with Brock Lesnar (UFC 200) a fairly close second at $2.5 million. These payouts do not include Pay-per-view percentages or any other bonuses.
In contrast, the top for boxing is Floyd Mayweather Jr who took home $100 million just for his purse alone, against Conor McGregor. Mayweather does tend to be the exception, taking home far more than most other top-tier boxers. It is hard to take Mayweather out the equation when talking about top-paid boxers. Of the top seven grossing matches of all time, he was a participant in at least four.
When Manny Pacquiao fought Mayweather in 2015, the PacMan came home with $120 million. In September, the highly anticipated Miguel Canelo and Gennady Golovkin bout boasted a purse of $15 for each fighter, before the 60 percent PPV split. The PPV and other bonus can add millions on to each purse in the boxing industry.
That being said, the cream of the crop in boxing obviously grosses significantly more than its MMA counterparts. The bottom tier may be a different story. The UFC minimum purse for any card is $10k to show and $10k to win. Unlike most boxing promotions, purses are usually offered at a flat rate with a win bonus that equals the same amount. This provides added incentive for an athlete to preform to their highest potential. Some lower promotions like Victory Fighting Championship (broadcast on UFC Fight Pass) have been known to offer “finishing bonuses” to fighters who end the fight rather than letting it go to the judges.
In a stark contrast to the UFC minimum, the opening bout for the Mayweather/McGregor card did not even amount to $10k between the two fighters. This may also have to do with the fact that rounds were significantly shorter for Savannah Marshall ($5k) and Sydney LeBlanc ($3.5k). The first 12 round fight on the card was Andrew Tabiti ($100k) against Steve Cunningham ($100k).
The UFC minimum is not the industry standard. Bellator MMA may start an undercard fighter at $1,000 to show and $1,000 to win, while small regional promotions may be as low as $200 and $200. This is not unlike smaller boxing promotions.
Overall it can be said that top tier boxers currently have the opportunity to make significantly more than MMA fighters at the highest levels, while the pay is probably more even overall at the lower levels.
Competition With Other Promotions
In joining the boxing community, the UFC will have significantly more competition than the promotion is use to. This is unlikely to dissuade the UFC, given that they are very good at what they do and will undoubtedly be competitive in the current mix as far as the promotional aspect is concerned.
Some of the top competition in the boxing world include; Top Rank, Golden Boy, Premier Boxing Champions, K2 Promotions, Dibella, Mayweather Promotions (TMT), Roc Nation and the recent addition of the successful British promotion, Matchroom.
These promotions host their events across a number of high-profile broadcast networks such as HBO, Showtime, ESPN, CBS, NBC, Fox, FS1 and more. The UFC currently airs its “Fight Night” events, which are not PPV, on FS1. Premier Boxing Champions is the boxing promotion featured on FS1, which could mean someone would need to find a new network if the UFC started promoting boxing events frequently. This would be less likely in the immediate future as the UFC would probably start out with a few PPV events to test the waters.
Audience and Marketing Strategy
The UFC already has a huge audience in the MMA world. It is very likely that a good number of these fight fans would follow the promotion into the boxing arena. As evident in the Mayweather/McGregor fight, the UFC has the ability to reach a broad demographic.
With decades of steady promotions and marketing strategies, the UFC has already mastered the promotional aspects of creating a successful event. They do an incredible job of pre and post fight media, using an adequate but not overbearing amount of dramatization to draw fans in to the personalities of the competitors. Like any good TV show, movie or book, knowing the compelling backstory of an athlete inspires fans to feel more connect and more motivated to watch.
This type of professional and methodical approach to promotion may be what boxing needs to make a comeback in the U.S. where it is still less popular than in other regions.
Competition for Boxers
McGregor is not the only MMA competitor who has shown interest in boxing. There are a good number of athletes who already compete in both sports. UFC athletes Jose Aldo, Stipe Miocic, Jimi Manuwa and Cris Cyborg have already voiced interest in wanting to box. If allowed to compete in the ring, those names would undoubtedly draw a crowd.
The hang up on which promotions boxers compete for could potentially ride on the payout, which it should. No one is looking to get punched in the face for free. As extensively discussed earlier, the high-end payouts for the UFC are still significantly less than that for top boxers. The UFC may find that they have to cough up more to compete for athletes in the industry. Depending on the PPV and gate numbers, this may be worth it, as many large boxing cards have draw a much bigger crowd and PPV turn-out than UFC cards.
Top Rank Boxing Promoter Bob Arum has been very vocal in his opinion that the UFC is considering getting to boxing because of low PPV numbers. “My thoughts are that UFC is desperate. Their numbers are way off, they have no marquee star,” Arum said in an interview with NYFights.com. “Look at their PPV numbers. They barely break 100,000 homes on their shows. They’re having trouble getting renewal on their contract with FOX. They have to do something. One of things they may try and fall back on and try and acquire a boxing presence.”
Arum, who typically has a lot to say when it comes to the UFC and Dana White, has also made comments about the amount the UFC pays their fighters in comparison to boxing. In a 2011 interview he was quoted as saying, “I don’t know where Dana is coming from, I never said anything bad about him. But Dana has to realize, because of the monopoly the UFC has, they pay their fighters maybe 20-percent of the proceeds that come in on a UFC fight and we pay fighters over 80-percent. So that’s the difference, so talk about giving back to the sport, when you pay your talent 20-percent and boxing promoter’s like myself and others pay over 80-percent, who’s giving back to whom? It’s very easy (to make network deals) when his athletes get paid nothing. Our athletes get paid.”
The other question is whether or not the UFC would put their boxers on an official roster with the same ancillary rights agreement that their MMA fighters are subject to. This could also make a difference in the caliber of athlete they acquire.
UFC Easing in to the Boxing World
About this same time last year Arum told media outlets that he met with Ari Emanuel (owner of UFC parent company WME-IMG) who was interested in purchasing Top Rank’s fight library for $100 million, which includes iconic fights such as 1975’s “Thirlla in Manilla” between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. Though the conversation did not go anywhere, the library would have been an addition to the extensive classic fights available on UFC Fight Pass and a soft introduction into boxing for UFC fans. A long-term deal with ESPN has since been inked for rights to the library.
In the recent interview with NYFights.com Arum stated that he was contacted last year by someone in the UFC wanting to purchase Top Rank. It was unclear if Arum was referring to the entire promotion or the previously mentioned attempt to purchase the library. The UFC is know for successful acquisition of other promotions, though up to this point they have all been MMA only promotions.
Allowing McGregor to compete in boxing earlier this year granted the UFC businessmen and fans to acquire a taste for boxing without shoving it down their throats. This has sparked obvious interest from fighters and there are a lot of MMA fighters out there with great hands who could be fun to watch.
The Future of UFC Boxing
Will we see a UFC boxing card in the near future? Overall it makes a good deal of since. The UFC already knows the formula for success in combat sports. The company has already gotten its feet wet. Fighters and fans are watching anxiously to see what the UFC’s next move will be.
Floyd Mayweather’s Return? Don’t call it a comeback…
By: Kirk Jackson
“Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years,” famous lyrics recited from the Hip-Hop legend LL Cool J from his number-one single Mama Said Knock You Out can certainly apply to a recent scenario featuring the retired/semi-retired Floyd Mayweather.
In recent weeks, the eventual Hall of Famer posted videos to his social media sites featuring short snippets of training.
In the video, Mayweather is rigorously punching the heavy bag and participating in other boxing-fight related activities across other video footage. The question is why? What is his intent? Is he teasing for yet another comeback and if so, against who?
Notorious Mayweather criticizer and HBO boxing analyst Jim Lampley, suggests Mayweather intends to fight Conor McGregor one more time.
“Why else is he putting out videos of him working out?” Lampley said to a TMZ reporter. “He allowed Conor McGregor to ‘win’ three rounds. Why did the whole thing last 10 rounds, etc.? It’s all a setup.”
Lampley of course is referencing when the undefeated former boxing champion Mayweather defeated the current UFC lightweight champion McGregor via TKO in the 10th round Aug. 26 in Las Vegas.
“Why should he retire?” Lampley said. “He created a marvelous scam with this whole thing. He allowed Conor to quote ‘win’ three rounds, so the whole global MMA wish community could have something to latch onto.”
“I think there’s a decent chance, there’s enough suckers out there, Floyd could maybe make another $150 million.”
No matter how the fight played out at the very least, the event was a financial success. Although the official numbers have yet to release, UFC President Dana White has celebrated the fiscal achievements of the circus that was.
“The thing ended up doing 6.7 million pay-per-view buys globally,” said White on The Unnamed Podvideocast. “How about this, we broke the record in Australia, we broke the record in the U.K. at four in the morning. We broke the record in Spain, Canada and the United States.”
It’s estimated the fight generated around $670 million in PPV revenue alone, leaving Mayweather with the lion’s share of the profit, providing Mayweather with incentive to run this lap yet again as Lampley suggested.
For McGregor’s part, he probably wouldn’t mind getting another crack at Mayweather.
For one, he will not receive criticism for losing to Mayweather; even though he back-peddled from the smaller, older, frail, fighter most of the fight.
He’ll continue to make excuses and escape criticism.
Of course there’s also financial incentive. Why return to the Octagon for peanuts (comparatively to boxing) when you can earn when you can earn multiple millions more in the boxing ring against one of the highest all-time grossing athletes across any sport?
As for the fight itself, the proposed rematch between Mayweather and McGregor and the excitement factor for most boxing fans will more than likely be non-existent.
For viewers possessing a greater understanding of boxing semantics, many could see what Mayweather was doing and how the fight was going to turn out. Lampley even mentioned it.
Mayweather toyed with McGregor, intentionally conceded rounds to sell/carry the fight and there isn’t much McGregor could do in a rematch that could change the outcome.
For those latching on to hope a rematch will be different, keep this mind. McGregor is a talented fighter and is exceptional within his realm of fighting.
McGregor is a good athlete and with time and proper training, could potentially develop into a good boxer.
But boxing is not an art mastered over the course of a few months. Boxing takes years to master and Mayweather is one of the grandeurs of the sport.
The initial fight promotion was based on racial propaganda and viewed by many people invested in that drama; the rematch may potentially feature some of the viewers from the same crowd.
If Mayweather isn’t training for a McGregor rematch, who is he training for? Is it current middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin? Or former two-division champion Danny Garcia?
The interview was conducted roughly a year ago and the options mentioned may no longer hold much merit.
Garcia is rumored to face Brandon Rios towards the end of the year and if he emerges victorious who knows what is footing will be in the convoluted welterweight championship picture. Although a bout with Mayweather promptly trumps any other option.
There was a stipulation for Mayweather regarding a bout with Golovkin but due to Andre Ward’s recent retirement, combined with Golovkin performance against former Mayweather adversary Canelo Alvarez, there could be a slim opening for the fighter referred to as “Triple G.”
At the age of 35, Golovkin is slowly but surely transforming into a household name with his last bout reaching nearly one million Pay-per-view buys.
He’s undefeated, a long time champion and regarded by many as a feared knock-out artist; that’s enough of a storyline to sell a potential fight against Mayweather.
There’s also another fighter knocking on Mayweather’s door asking for a fight with the retired champion.
In any fight I’ve never been out boxed. Mayweather khan fight would be a game of chess. Speed movement and accuracy will cause him problems
— Amir Khan (@amirkingkhan) October 23, 2017
Although it’d be hard-pressed to find anyone outside of Amir Khan’s family who wants to see a bout between Khan and Mayweather.
At this point, it’s purely speculation whether Mayweather will return to the ring as a fighter in the
The question remains why post training footage unless there is a plan in motion?
Mayweather may keep us guessing until he’s ready to reveal his move; just as he does to opponents inside the boxing ring.
Conor McGregor Says He’d Win Rematch With Mayweather
By: Sean Crose
After being decisively beaten by pound for pound great Floyd Mayweather in August, UFC star Conor McGregor now says that he would beat the 50-0 Mayweather in a boxing rematch. “What’s sickening me,” McGregor said during a question and answer session in Scotland “is that the little motherfucker is retired now.” McGregor made it clear that, should he fight Mayweather again, he’d enter the ring having learned from his mistakes. “With the lessons I learned from that first fight,” he said, “if I had another go now, I’d get him.”
McGregor may have been stopped by Mayweather in the 10th round of their blockbuster match on August 26th in Vegas, but, a mere month later, the Irishman is showing nothing can stop his mouth. Although he made it clear he’s not going to call the 40 year old Mayweather out, McGregor left the door open for a second go-round in the ring. “I might get the phone call again and we may do it again,” he said. McGregor made it clear he thinks there’s a chance of a rematch because of the way Mayweather goes through money.
“I think I could be getting a call anytime soon to go again,” he claimed, “and I fucking want to.” While he admitted that he outright lost to Mayweather this past summer McGregor is a man with a nearly unhealthy abundance of confidence. It’s also obvious that the fighter hates to lose. After being bested by fellow UFC fighter Nate Diaz in March of 2017, McGregor was determined to come back and win a rematch – which he did, albeit by the slimmest of margins, the following summer. Now it’s the Mayweather fight which appears to be lodged in McGregor’s head.
“I almost feel like I sold myself out,” he recalled, referring to the fact that he willingly chose to face Mayweather in a ring although he himself had never boxed professionally before. “I put so many skills and so many shots in my back pocket for a pay check and big event,” he added, “and that’s been messing with my head a little bit.” Needless to say, McGregor sill has plenty of options available to him in his home sport of MMA. “Of course,” he said, “the Nate Diaz trilogy fight is there.” He mentioned sparring rival Paulie Malignaggi as being a possible opponent, as well, although McGregor claimed he’d want that fight to go down in an MMA octagon rather than in a boxing ring.
More Full Coverage: Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor
Mayweather-McGregor Generates $55 Million in Ticket Sales
By Jake Donovan
It didn’t turn out to be the record-breaking event that event handlers optimistically anticipated, but Floyd Mayweather once again validated his “Money” nickname with his latest ring return.
Photo Credit: USA Today
The unbeaten former five division world champion and pound-for-pound king cemented his place as the most lucrative one-man show in boxing history. His 10th round knockout of Conor McGregor on August 26 pulled in a live gate of $55,414,865.79 from 13,049 tickets sold at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, according to figures released Wednesday afternoon by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
The final tally falls well short of the all-time record—also owned by Mayweather, whose May ’15 12-round win over Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas generated north of $72 million—but is still a solid number two on the list of biggest live gates in the history of Nevada boxing. In fact, Mayweather has now participated in six of the seven best-selling boxing events in Las Vegas, including five of the final six fights of his storied career.
Fight night attendance was initially announced at 14,623—a figure which, even if accurate, falls well short of the 20,500 seat-capacity that T-Mobile Arena can hold for a boxing event.
According to the breakdown from the NSAC, there were 13,094 tickets sold with 137 seats comped, leaving a gap of roughly 1,500 tickets. The average price for event tickets sold was $4,232, with prices ranging from $5,000 to $10,000.
The amount of tickets sold is the second lowest among Mayweather’s 12 fights on Nevada’s list of highest grossing events, landing just ahead of his last bout – a 12-round win over Andre Berto in Sept. ’15, of which a $10,062,500 live gate was generated from the 12,947 tickets sold for what at the time was advertised as his last-ever fight.
Mayweather’s last 12 fights are all within the 26 highest grossing boxing events to take place in Las Vegas, including 10 that cracked the $10 million mark. The dozen fights make for more than $258 million in ticket sales, nearly equal to that of the combined total of the 23 remaining events on Nevada’s Top 35 list.
Mayweather (50-0, 27KOs) ended a near two-year hiatus from the ring for a one-time return to face McGregor (0-1), a two-division world champion in UFC but whom was making his pro debut. The knockout was his first since a 4th round stoppage of Victor Ortiz in Sept. 11, having scored just three stoppages in his final 15 career fights.
After the fight, the 40-year old future Hall of Famer insisted this event was a one-time break from what he promises to be a permanent retirement. He remains active in the sport, in fact with his Mayweather Promotions serving as the lead for a Showtime boxing telecast this Friday in Las Vegas headlined by a super middleweight title fight between David Benavidez and Ronald Gavril, the latter whom he promotes.
Final Pay-Per-View figures have yet to be released, although Showtime—whom produced and distributed the August 26 event—teased just prior to Labor Day of the show having cracked 4 million units sold. Stephen Espinoza, executive vice president of Showtime Sports hinted that the event could very well wind up breaking the all-time mark of $400 million in PPV revenue from 4.6 million units sold by Mayweather-Pacquiao, although industry sources suggest that it will ultimately fall just short.
Regardless, it winds up no worse than the second-best selling PPV event and live gate of all time, with Mayweather generating upwards of $800 million in PPV sales and more than $127 million in ticket sales—two figures that just about ever other boxer in history can only dream to boast for an entire career.
More Full Coverage: Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor
The “50th” Win the Biggest Problem for Boxing
By: Ken Hissner
This writer refused an invitation to watch Mayweather – McGregor on PPV. Since I heard so many various opinions late, Saturday night I raced through it. A rematch would never sell after this “sleeper!” Round after round it all looked the same.
How an MMA fighter can hold off a 13 month retired former world champion for 9 rounds with a busy but not effective jab is beyond me. If one of the current champions in the welterweight division were Mayweather’s opponent he could have been in deep water.
Photo credit: USA Today
First thoughts were Mayweather was “carrying” McGregor but as it went on with Mayweather throwing half a dozen punches per round it reminded me of the problems he had with southpaw Zab Judah for the better part of the first 5 rounds.
This “glorified sparring session” disappointed most I am sure. It was “another black eye to boxing” as far as this writer is concerned. Nevada and any other commission that sanctioned this 12 round exhibition as an official bout only shows their ignorance and lack of knowledge of boxing and even the boxing of today.
Marciano’s 49-0 record has stood for over 50 years though a handful have passed it they all eventually suffered a defeat. Chayaphon Moonsriis a 105# world champion out of Thailand who is 48-0. I haven’t read anything about him but in my own writings for his last several bouts. With the competition he has been fighting he should surpass both Marciano and Mayweather in 2018. Then what?
Calling this the 50th win of Mayweather’s career is only cheapening the record. He could have gotten it fighting a professional boxer I’m sure. There is always a Guerrero or Berto available. Where are the true fight fan’s today and why are they not speaking out?