McGregor and Smith Retain Titles in Glasgow
By: Oliver McManus
MTK Global touched down in Glasgow on Saturday evening having produced a scintillating card at Ulster Hall, Belfast, just 24 hours previously; Steven Ward vs Liam Conroy an early contender for fight of the year, in case you haven’t caught it. Two title fights topped the shortened seven fight card that had been bereft with injuries and late withdrawals; nonetheless Lee McGregor vs Scott Allan and Kieran Smith vs Ivan Montero were enough to pique interest.
McGregor, the Commonwealth bantamweight champion, was making the first defence of the title he won in October (a 12th round KO over Thomas Essomba) whilst Allan came into the fight having outpointed Gary Rae for the Celtic equivalent, also in October. McGregor had already made clear his intention to chase a showdown with, British champion, Kash Farooq should he emerge victorious.
Animosity brewed between the two men before the contest and they both set out looking to take the centre ground. Allan, significantly the smaller man, looked in fantastic shape and marched forward with gusto whilst McGregor looked to tee off with heavy shots from the inside; a couple of uppercuts finding their mark early on. McGregor, trained by Grant Smith, was making the most of his stockier frame but Allan was undeterred by any such disadvantage and was keen to keep McGregor alert from the off.
The long limbs of the champion enabled him to box from distance and out of Allan’s reach – despite the shuffles and feints from the challenger – but both found it hard to resist getting involved in a skirmish and would find each other, again, at the centre of the ring. Mini trade offs took place within rounds as both men unloaded on brusque swinging hooks and the encounter was enthralling from round one.
Allan, to his credit, was eager to take the fight to the 1/10 favourite and was making himself elusive thanks to effective head movement and a constant shuffle of his front foot; McGregor struggled with finding his range on occasion thanks to footwork of his opponent. Indeed the challenger was able to pick his punches well when dipping inside and landed two accurate, if not telling, uppercuts in the third round.
Despite such odds being available beforehand you couldn’t separate either man in the first third of the fight as Allan fought, seemingly, without pressure – light on his feet and willing to step into range in order to fire in some shots of his own. McGregor, you felt, was doing enough to pip the rounds and, once he decided that it was best to fight from distance, began to look more measured in his approach. The temptation in a fight with high tensions is always to get involved in a brawl but that carrot disappeared after a few rounds with McGregor willing to go back to basics. The same could not be said for Allan, however, who was finding success in the scrappier phases of the fight and moved around McGregor well to continually open up angles.
With the fifth round dwindling and Allan gaining a foothold, McGregor looked to go after his man and was firing in punches with real conviction – slamming shots into the body of his counterpart and sapping away the energy. As soon as Allan showed he was hurting there was an undeniable burst of torrid aggression from McGregor who was gung-ho and care-free in his pursuit of the finish.
That looked to be a turning point for the 22 year old who emerged in the sixth round with a renewed fire in his belly and he did well to remain composed; dangling the left hand around waist high and remaining fluid with his movement. Allan, too, regained his focus and responded well with the lead left leg control the distance between both men and resulting in a round where McGregor was unable to capitalise on the frailties of his opponent.
The Celtic champion, aged 26, was proving to be far more than just an “underdog” with great resolve to bide himself the time to recover and an apt shot selection that was garnering him success. He was taking rounds off the pre-fight favourite on merit and leaving McGregor in two minds as to which strategy to pursue: calm from distance or look for the finish in a brawl. It must be said, though, McGregor remained at ease throughout the fight and was confident his more precise work-load was seeing him collect rounds. Allan’s pot-shots were landing with regularity, mind, as he took the seventh round with some eye-catching counter punches.
You suspect, though, that Allan required more sustained spells of success in order to start procuring the rounds necessary for victory and it was, in likelihood, the more prolific body of work from McGregor that was seeing him through the contest. A body shot, catching Allan on the left side, dropped his challenger despite protests and, once more, he began to tee-off on his opponent; Allan’s body began to droop and Victor Loughlin had seen enough. All over in the eighth in a thoroughly enjoyable encounter.
Initially scheduled to face Michael McGurk, Kieran Smith found himself facing a tricky Mexican challenger in the form of Ivan Montero. Montero (21-3) is a veteran of the sport having been a professional for eight years with fights against Michel Soro and Erickson Lubin; McGurk, meanwhile, won the WBC International Silver title against Evaldas Korsakas (another late notice replacement) in November and has stayed busy by beating Jan Balog in March. Three fights on the trot where McGurk has had to face a replacement opponent but, still, a chance to get a reasonable scalp on his resumé.
The pace was bouncy from the off with McGurk, fighting from the southpaw stance, looking to lurch in and attack the body of his shorter opponent. Montero kept a cautious guard with the hands perched loftily around his head but having sought to land a shot of his own Smith was able to land a decent right hand to the Mexican’s cheek. Montero was down on three occasions in the first round, all ruled a slip, and he seemed to struggle to find any sort of comfortable rhythm. Smith looked in control from the outset, rolling his shoulders as they stood opposite each other and continually moving to ensure Montero couldn’t hold ground.
Both men were listed as 6”2’ but it was the home fighter who carried the height advantage and he was visibly punching downwards over the opening phases. Fighting on the outside, like a true southpaw, he seemed comfortable in allowing the jab to pick Montero off while Montero looked to engage in a machismo stand-off – who will blink first. Smith refused to be drawn into such tactics and was persistent in looking to target the body of Montero; his opponent was astute at dipping his legs to prompt a change in levels from Smith.
Montero was more rugged and less thought out than the home fighter and he was brash in lunging in, often missing the mark by some distance, whilst Smith fought on a tether – restrained to begin with and gradually loosening up as the fight progressed. Significant shots landed to boost his confidence and you could feel a relaxation as the fight hit the halfway stage. A clash of heads in the fourth round stirred the spirits and enticed Montero forward as he encroached on the territory of Smith: nipping in when the Scot tried to throw a jab from distance.
Heads collided at the turn of the fifth round with the styles struggling to gel cohesively but, in response, Smith fought to a sharper gameplan with a focus on landing accurately as opposed to with great volume. Jostling around the ring, in response to a lackadaisical posture from Montero, he popped the right hand jab with consistency and actually landed a couple of nice straight-left’s down the gulley of his opponent. A familiar rhythm ensued with Montero unwilling to commit to any game-changing attacks of his own and Smith content to ride out risk-free advantage whilst producing occasional glimpses of his raw ability.
That was enough to prevent any enthusiasm from Montero who would visibly fatigue with each passing round, becoming sluggish and indifferent, whilst Smith stamped his authority over the contest. Not a beatdown, by any stretch, the champion grew stronger as the fight went on and began to unfurl shots with greater spit when the spirit of Montero was firmly sniffed out. A nastyy gash opened up over the bridge of the Mexican’s nose and we went to the scorecards a minute earlier than scheduled – 99-91, 99-91, 99-90. A comfortable win and a performance Smith should be pleased with, given the circumstances.
Conor McGregor Wants Floyd Mayweather Jr. Rematch
By: Jesse Donathan
Conor McGregor needs a big win and he needs one now. At stake, a rematch with Floyd Mayweather Jr. and another multimillion-dollar payday. According to a May 24, 2019 bloodyelbow.com article titled, “Conor McGregor insists he’d beat Floyd Mayweather in rematch: I whooped him ‘in the early rounds’,” author Mookie Alexander writes that, “It’s been nearly two full years since former UFC champion Conor McGregor stepped into the boxing ring to take on Floyd Mayweather in one of the richest fights in history.”
According to Alexander, it was a moral victory for McGregor, if such a thing exists, because prior to stepping in with arguably one of the best to ever lace them up in Floyd Mayweather Jr., McGregor had never fought in a professional boxing contest before.
“I was whooping him in the early rounds,” writes Bloodyelbow.com on McGregor’s initial assessments of breaking the ice with Mayweather. “I actually went back to my corner after the first round and said ‘this is easy’. I literally said that to my corner man.”
While Conor was busy playing checkers, Floyd was playing chess. Speaking to FightHype.com, cbssports.com quoted the great Mayweather as stating, “You know I carried McGregor. You know I made it look good for y’all,” writes author Brian Campbell in his December 5, 2017 article titled, “Floyd Mayweather admits to ‘carrying’ Conor McGregor during De La Hoya rant.”
According to Campbell, “there was a lingering feeling from some in the aftermath that the fight, pairing the greatest boxer of his era against a boxing novice, may not have been completely on the up and up.”
The cbssports.com boxing analyst would go on to write that, “At the very least, many wondered whether the 40-year-old Mayweather carried McGregor in the early rounds before switching gears and finishing him late. “
In other words, Mayweather employed a rope-a-dope strategy to lure McGregor into tiring himself out early on and ultimately drew the Irishmen into his tangled web of deceit. And McGregor to this day is busy bragging about how he would fair against Mayweather in the early rounds of a rematch that few want to see; still too foolish or stubborn to see he was played like a fiddle by the boxing icon.
And why would he? Everyone but the general public knew what the end result of Mayweather vs. McGregor would ultimately turn out to be. The entire charade was little more than a revenue generating machine for everyone involved. McGregor had no chance; he was there to collect a check and laugh all the way to the bank. And by all accounts, that is exactly what he has did.
According to a September 8, 2017 NYPost.com article titled, “McGregor already blowing through his $130M payday,” author Stuart Adkins of The Sun writes, “The mixed-martial-arts superstar is clearly enjoying his reported $130 million payday.” Adkins would go on to note that McGregor was reportedly, “… emptying the tank partying in Ibiza after his first professional boxing match, which ended in valiant defeat in Las Vegas.”
Now, McGregor wants a rematch. The Irishmen claims he would beat Mayweather Jr. this time around, though after going approximately three years without winning a fight period, in boxing or mixed martial arts, nobody is buying what Conor McGregor is selling anymore. McGregor has been busy living up to his “Notorious” nickname instead of busy training for big fights. As BoxingInsider.com previously reported, McGregor has been accused of rape in Ireland and has had a string of legal issues since losing to Mayweather in 2017.
McGregor last competed in the cage in October of 2018, losing to UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov by submission in a failed bid to recapture UFC lightweight gold. It was a fight McGregor with McGregor’s fate already etched in stone.
Coming off a relatively long lay-off the inactive McGregor faced the undefeated Nurmagomedov destined to be taken down and beat on from post to post. Having proved very little on the mat previously besides a propensity to avoid it at all costs the formula on how to beat McGregor had been written long ago.
The only thing the fight did prove beyond McGregor’s infamous lack of ground acumen was the fact McGregor was willing to step into the cage with legitimate competition in a risky bid to put himself in a better position to lobby for a rematch with the boxing great. McGregor had his opportunity to rematch Mayweather served to him on a silver platter and he let it slip right through his fingertips.
In short, Conor McGregor has lost his way. A former two division champion who made his name cherry picking opponents and fighting smaller men, McGregor now finds himself on the cusp of “Mayweather irrelevancy.” Reduced to begging for rematches against Mayweather and the current UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, a loss for the UFC star against virtually anyone else would all but guarantee running it back against “Money” Mayweather would be little more than a waning image in the Irishmen’s rear-view mirror.
McGregor, like the great Bonnie Tyler before him, needs a hero. Someone just like Dmitri “The Lifeguard” Smoliakov; someone to throw the Irishmen a life preserver and save his career from certain major setback. It would be in McGregor’s best interest to go back to his roots in his next outing in hand picking big name, smaller opponents in an effort to maximize the former UFC two-division champions chances of success in what could be characterized as a must win scenario for the Irish mixed martial arts superstar.
On the line, another lucrative payday for both Mayweather and McGregor in a fight that at this time is an incredibly hard if not impossible sell given Conor’s current set of circumstances. McGregor needs another major scalp to add to his belt, and until then he finds himself in no man’s land where the prospect of facing legitimate competition and losing could be potentially monetarily disastrous. Conor McGregor needs a hero. And he’s gotta be strong, and he’s gotta be fast, and he’s gotta be ready to carry the fight. At least, that’s how I think the song goes?
McGregor Accused Of Throwing Cheap Shot In Amateur Boxing Match
By: Sean Crose
Conor McGregor is back…in the ring that is. And yes, he’s still Conor McGregor, still spreading controversy wherever he goes, and still reportedly not doing all that great in between the ropes. Last Friday night in Dublin, the UFC star and international celebrity engaged in an exhibition boxing match in his home country of Ireland against Michael McGrane, an Irish electrician and boxing hopeful. Needless to say, the event has drawn attention.
McGrane, it seems, took a left hook from McGregor at the beginning of the fight, when he argues the two men were supposed to touch gloves. “It was as the cheapest shot I ever caught in me life, man,” McGrane, a good natured type, told TMZ, which has video of the incident. “You’re meant to go back to your corner,” McGrane claimed, “but Conor never went back to his corner… leaped at me with a left hook.” TMZ showcased the mark on McGrane’s face that he said came from the McGregor shot. Needless to say, McGregor was not called out for the blow.
“The ref was on his side,” said McGrane. “There’s no way I would have won that fight unless I knocked him out.” With that in mind, TMZ claims it’s been “told the fight ended in a DRAW,” which pretty much means McGregor may well have yet to win a ring battle in either the amateur or professional ranks since becoming a household name several years ago. At the moment, the man known as “The Notorious” is kinda-sorta retired from the UFC and swimming in controversy, some of it quite serious and disturbing.
Through it all, however, McGregor has made it a point to stay in the public eye. Whether he’s pushing his Proper 12 whiskey brand on television, or posting comments on Instagram, the man is terminally keeping himself in the news. Although he tried to crack into boxing by facing Floyd Mayweather in 2017, McGregor ended up being stopped by Mayweather in the tenth round in what had essentially become a one sided fight. The cheap shot story, however, shows that McGregor may have learned some lessons from the old master, as Mayweather famously stopped a dirty-fighting Victor Ortiz via cheap shot back in 2011.
Although openly grateful for the opportunity to face an enormous star like McGregor, McGrane expressed shock at the surprise left hook. “Conor McGregor hit me a cheap shot in his own hometown!!!” TMZ quotes the man exclaiming.
Conor McGregor Accused of Rape
By: Jesse Donathan
There was an eerie silence within the mixed marital arts media; whispers and rumors were circulating throughout social media concerning reports which suggest, “that a well-known sportsperson has been accused of sexual assault,” and “that the star, who has remained unnamed, was on a two-day drinking binge in advance of the attack” according to a December 12, 2018 rt.com article titled, “‘Wild-eyed’: Irish sports star accused of sexual assault engaged in two-day ‘bender’.” The article would go on to state, “the woman is understood to have received physical injuries, including bruising and bleeding, in the attack. No arrests have yet been made.” On Tuesday, March 26, 2019, the social media rumors seemed to have been confirmed as the New York Times published an article titled, “Conor McGregor Under Investigation Over Sexual Assault Allegation in Ireland” by author Tariq Panja.
Photo Credit: Conor McGregor Twitter Account
According to a January 18, 2019 irishcentral.com article titled, “Irish sports star accused of rape and assault arrested and released” the unnamed Irish sports star “presented himself to police at Dundrum Garda Station on Thursday night, having made an appointment. He was accompanied by his lawyer.” A Garda spokeswoman told the Irish Mirror:
“Gardaí [Irish police] in Dundrum investigating an alleged sexual assault reported on Monday 10th December 2018 arrested a man on Thursday 17th January 2019.”
The irishcentral.com article would go on to state that according to one police source, “there is no doubt that this young lady suffered a horrendous ordeal – the examinations and all the evidence shows that she was raped and very badly assaulted in that penthouse suite.”
“Speculation is rife on social media as to the identity of the sports star who can’t be named in Ireland for legal reasons,” writes Niall Connor in his December 12, 2018 irishmirror.ie article titled, “Woman ‘raped’ by Irish sports star in Dublin has ‘partner and young child’.”
In a January 18, 2019 irishtimes.com article titled, “Sportsman arrested over alleged sex assault in Dublin” author Conor Gallagher and Ronan McGreevy write that the unnamed sportsman was, “detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984 before being released without charge. A file on the matter is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions and the investigation is ongoing.”
In an unrelated, separate matter, a November 28, 2018 rte.ie article titled, “Man convicted over breach of anonymity in Belfast rape trial” writes that, “a man in his 30s has been convicted in Northern Ireland after admitting that he used social media to publish the name of a complainant in a high-profile rape trial earlier this year. In a statement, the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) for Northern Ireland said that Sean McFarland appeared in court in Belfast today and pleaded guilty to one charge of breaching a ban on reporting the identity of an alleged victim.” Marianne O’Kane, head of the PPS serious Crime Unit is quoted as stating, “we would also ask the public to take extreme care when publishing any type of commentary on any live court proceedings, given the potential risk of prejudice to a fair trial.”
“People standing trial for rape should not be identified unless they are found guilty, Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) MP Ian Paisley has said. It follows the high-profile trial of rugby players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding who were acquitted of rape. Mr. Paisley called for a change in the law to give the accused the same right to anonymity as a rape complainant,” writes the BBC in their March 29, 2018 article titled, “Ian Paisley says raped accused should have anonymity.” The article would go on to quote Mr. Paisley as saying, “No party should be identified in advance of the verdict and only then when there is a guilty verdict.”
The New York Times report comes on the heels of Conor McGregor’s arrest in Miami following an altercation with a fan where McGregor is alleged to have taken liberties with the fans phone resulting in the UFC stars arrest for strong armed robbery according to March 11, 2019 Miami Herald report by David Ovalle.
McGregor burst onto the UFC scene in 2013, going on to become a two-division champion while virtually being the face of organization. Coincidentally, McGregor announced his retirement from the sport Tuesday, March 26, 2019 hours prior to the New York Times article running. The announcement was widely viewed as a faux move, with McGregor holding out from competing in the UFC in a bid to attain partial ownership from the organization. The betting man might come to a different conclusion however, with McGregor’s retirement announcement likely being a strategic move in an attempt to smoke screen and stem the tide of news in the United States of his investigation for sexual assault in Ireland. At any rate, this is bad publicity for the UFC and heartbreaking news to the legions of Conor McGregor fans around the globe.
NSAC Releases Details on Infamous McGregor/Nurmagomedov Brawl, Suspension, and Fines
By: Jesse Donathan
The Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) released the details surrounding the fines and suspensions Tuesday in relation to the October 6, 2018 UFC 229 brawl that saw UFC star Conor McGregor lose to UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov immediately before a brawl broke out cage side between Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor’s Brazilian Jiujitsu coach and Bellator MMA fighter Dillon Danis. “The Eagle” Nurmagomedov flew over the cage and jumped into the sea of spectators to sink his talons into the Jiujitsu prodigy before security quickly intervened and escorted Danis out of the arena.
While that brawl was in the process of being extinguished outside the cage, members of Nurmagomedov’s entourage stormed the Octagon where McGregor himself was the target of retribution from team Nurmagomedov. It was a wild, chaotic scene as McGregor was actively engaged inside the cage after an exhausting, unsuccessful effort against Nurmagomedov by members of Nurmagomedov’s Fight Spirit team who were seeking redemption for the notorious UFC 223 media day scrum bus attack by Conor McGregor and his crew.
That incident, itself a retaliation for an earlier encounter by McGregor’s teammate, the now former UFC fighter Artem Lobov who has been released from the promotion according to Tristen Critchfield in a January 29, 2019 Sherdog.com report titled, “Conor McGregor training partner Artem Lobov released by the UFC.” Lobov was confronted by Nurmagomedov in a hotel lobby after comments Lobov had made publicly concerning the amount of fights Nurmagomedov had previously pulled out of, even going as far as to question the Dagestani champion’s heart and professionalism according to a 2018 givemesport.com article titled, “The exact reason why Khabib Nurmagomedov slapped Artem Lobov in Brooklyn” by Raza Kazi.
In a January 29, 2019 MMA Fighting piece titled, “Khabib Nurmagomedov receives nine-month suspension, $500K fine for role in UFC 229 brawl” by Alexander K. Lee, Nurmagomedov’s “suspension can be reduced by up to three months pending Nurmagomedov’s participation in an anti-bullying public service announcement that must be approved by the NAC.”
Long time MMA reporter Josh Gross reported via a January 29, 2019 Twitter post that Conor McGregor received a six-month suspension and $50K fine, while the Nurmagomedov team members who stormed the cage, Abubakar Nurmagomedov and UFC fighter Zubaira Tukhugov, both received one-year suspensions and $25k fines.
According to a January, 29 2019 cbssports.com article titled, “Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov receive punishments stemming from UFC 229 brawl” by Brian Campbell, McGregor will be eligible to compete as early as April while Nurmagomedov could be eligible to return as early as July of this year. Campbell would go on to report, “Ali Abdelaziz, Nurmagomedov’s manager, told ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on Tuesday that his fighter will pay the fines for both of his teammates. He also complained about the differences in punishments between McGregor and Nurmagomedov. ‘I don’t think it’s fair,’ Abdelaziz said. “Khabib gets $500,000 and Conor gets $50,000?”
McGregor was coming off a nearly two year lay off prior to losing to Nurmagomedov, a period that saw the UFC two division champion score the opportunity of a lifetime to fight one of boxings all-time great champions in Floyd Mayweather Jr. (50-0), losing to Mayweather in 10 rounds by TKO in a crossover fight where Mayweather reportedly carried the Irishmen according to a December 7, 2017 ESPN “Pardon The Interruption” YouTube video upload featuring Mike Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser.
Nurmagomedov himself is now looking to win the lottery, according to a January 28, 2019 MMAfighing.com article titled, “Report: Joe Rogan ‘guarantees’ Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Floyd Mayweather would sell ‘at least 1M PPV buys’ by Jeb Meshew, “Khabib has been teasing a potential crossover fight Mayweather since he submitted McGregor at UFC 229 and just last week, doubled down on the idea.”
This fight would absolutely resemble a real-life Rocky story, where an improbable fighter who doesn’t belong in there with the flamboyant, dominant champion manages to score the fight of a lifetime and takes the opportunity deadly serious while the rest of the world writes him off before the fight even occurs. Nurmagomedov would be coming to win, make no mistake about it, however unlikely his chances may actually seem to be. Mayweather is 50-0 for a reason, and should be able to handle the far less experienced mixed martial arts champion Nurmagomedov with relative ease considering it would be a professional boxing match but nobody told “The Eagle” that.
McGregor and Malignaggi in Talks?
By: Michael Kane
Could Conor McGregor be making a return to boxing this year?
Rumors are starting to spread in the UK and Ireland that suggest it may be likely.
Several boxing and MMA sites have said they have it from credible sources that discussions about a McGregor v Paulie Malignaggi fight have begun. The Sun newspaper today announced that the pair were in talks.
There has been a long running feud between the two fighters, ever since footage was leaked of a McGregor-Malignaggi sparring practice in the build up to the McGregor v Mayweather bout in 2017. In the footage it appeared Malignaggi had been floored by McGregor, this was dismissed by Malignaggi, who claims he was pushed. He then left McGregor’s training camp and has continually took to social media to vent against McGregor and his team.
McGregor returned to the UFC and was soundly defeated by lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov, submitting in the 4th round. Before this bout it was reported that McGregor had signed a multi fight deal to compete on the UFC.
Could the fight take place as part of a Zuffa Boxing promotion, a move Dana White, the UFC President has mooted in the past. The UFC also made moves into boxing by recently signing a deal with Roy Jones Jr Boxing Promotions to show events live on UFC Fight Pass.
Whether this fight comes to fruition, time will tell. Is it a fight boxing aficionados would savour? I doubt it.
Khabib vs. McGregor in Boxing?
By: Michael Kane
Conor McGregor fought UFC Lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov in October, and was convincingly defeated. McGregor would like a rematch and so it seems would Khabib Nurmagomedov’s father.
Only next time in a boxing ring.
After the Dagestani’s win, he called out Floyd Mayweather, Mayweather said the fight may happen and that he could make more money fighting Khabib than he did when he beat McGregor in the 10th round last year.
The rumours on this potential match up have gone quiet and now it seems Khabib and his team still fancy a boxing bout against his old foe, McGregor.
Whether this would hold much appeal to boxing aficionados around the world is debatable however, could it launch the much talked about entrance to the boxing world of Zuffa Boxing?
Speaking to Russian newspaper, Izvestia, Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov said, “As for the fight against Conor under boxing rules, this is a fight we are interested in. Khabib showed that he is able to beat the best strikers of mixed martial arts.
“He said this before, but few believed it. However, after strong victories over Michael Johnson, Edson Barboza and Conor, people begin to believe.”
Nurmagomedov knocked McGregor to the canvas in the second round of their bout at UFC 229 and may have taken some confidence that He could out strike the Irishman.
“Nurmagomedov is able to do it in the boxing ring. Khabib has all the skills to win by the rules of boxing. One of the key skills can be called endurance.
“I remember his five round fight with (Al) Iaquinta, in which Khabib showed his willingness to fight in absolutely any area, using everything from a left jab to control on the ground. I want to note that the fight against Iaquinta was of great importance to us, there was a belt at stake and it was important to keep the bout calm and take the win. Which we did!”
Mayweather Says He’ll Rematch McGregor : “I’m Helping Keep Combat Sports Alive!”
By: Sean Crose
Give this to Floyd Mayweather – the man knows how to keep himself in the spotlight. After it looked like his pay per view numbers might be starting to decline a while back, he finally agreed to meet Manny Pacquiao in what many observers felt was the money grab to end all money grabs. How wrong those observers were. For just over two years later, Mayweather got in the ring with the MMAs biggest star, the one man knee jerk reaction to every anti-bullying campaign known to man, Conor McGregor. Mayweather essentially made easy work of his Irish foe…only to just recently declare he would rematch Pacquiao in the near future.
Since then, Mayweather’s focus has apparently switched to Khabib Nomagomedov, the UFC star who recently came close to choking McGregor into oblivion. “Oh, we fighting!” Mayweather recently said of the Russian terror. “He called me out, so he gotta come to my world.” Naturally. One simply can’t expect a world class wrestler to wrestle. There’s simply too much money to be made leaving the cage for the ring and getting punched out by an aging boxing great. Or is there? If Khabib was only kidding when he called out Mayweather (which he did last week) this might all be nonsense.
Then again, who knows? At any rate, Mayweather is back in the news today, via TMZ, claiming he’s ready to give McGregor a rematch after fighting Khabib (one has to wonder how many beatings McGregor has left in him at this point). “After me and Khabib lock up,” he’s quoted as saying, “me and McGregor we gonna lock up again.” Mayweather, grandiose as ever, is also quoted as saying: “I’m helping keep combat sports alive!”” Perhaps Mayweather hasn’t heard of the massive 300 million plus deal former foe Canelo Alvarez has made with DAZN streaming service, or of the huge pay per view numbers such fights as Canelo-Golovkin and McGregor-Nurmogomadov have recently done. One suspects, however, that Mayweather has been kept well abreast of such news, hence the splashy headlines he’s taken to dishing out as of late.
Canelo, boxing’s new king (though many feel he lost his recent bout to Gennady Golovkin, only to be saved by the judges), is patently unimpressed with Mayweather’s latest round of media proclamations. “He wants to continue hurting boxing,” says the Mexican star of Mayweather, “by making fights that don’t make sense … and not giving boxing the credibility it deserves.” A younger, less able version of Canelo lost by decision to Mayweather in a massive 2013 bout. Now the Mexican himself wants a second chance.
“If he wants to return,” Canelo says of Mayweather, “I ask him to look my way to give a great fight to the fans.”
Mayweather Weighs In On McGregor-Khabib Fiasco
By: Sean Crose
Conor McGregor lost his second fight in a row last weekend, if you count his boxing match last year against Floyd Mayweather. This time, however, McGregor was back on his home turf, out of the ring and inside the cage where UFCs best prove their mettle. It was a one sided affair, with Russian lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov dominating his foe throughout most of the match before forcing the Irish star to tap out in the fourth round. No doubt it was a brilliant performance from Khabib. Unfortunately, the wrestler afterwards jumped out of the cage and attacked a member of McGregor’s team. Needless to say chaos ensued.
It’s easy for boxing fans to shake their collective heads at the supposed barbarity of the UFC, but boxing has earned quite a reputation of its own when it comes to combat sport’s insanity. As bad as last weekend was, at least no one lost an ear. One boxer is particularly qualified to talk about combat sport chaos. For Mayweather’s bout with Zab Judah famously turned chaotic when it went down back in 2006. “I’m not too familiar with the guy McGregor was fighting,” Mayweather is quoted as saying in regards to last weekend’s madness, “but I know the guy he was facing was undefeated.” Mayweather went on to condemn Saturday’s post fight action. “McGregor is a tough competitor,” he claimed, “but McGregor’s opponent jumped out of the ring and was fighting people in the crowd so, very unprofessional.”
Mayweather was notably cool when insanity erupted around him in the ring over a decade ago. He also knows, from facing McGregor, what it’s like to deal with the man’s taunts (it was the taunts that apparently took Khabib over the edge). Unlike Khabib, however, Mayweather remained sportsmanlike after defeating the controversial mma celebrity. “It’s going to be a huge fine,” Mayweather said of the penalties awaiting those involved in the McGregor-Khabib fracas. “I’m pretty sure because with my fight against Zab Judah, there was a crazy melee in the ring and a huge penalty – a huge fine. If I’m not mistaken, seven figures.”
Like McGregor, Mayweather knows how to get under the skin of an opponent. One thing the man has long been noted for, however, is discipline and self control when being under the bright lights. “I know when a guy’s jumping out of the cage into the audience and fighting different people,” Mayweather stated, “the fine is going to be crazy.”
Khabib’s Explosion: Was it Unexpected and Justified?
By: William Holmes
“This is respect sport….This is not trash-talking sport…I don’t want people talk shit about opponents, talk shit about his father, religion. You cannot talk about religion. You cannot talk about nation. Guys, you cannot talk about this stuff.”-Khabib Nurmagomedov
The talk of the combat sporting world this weekend was the Khabib vs. Conor McGregor UFC fight, which featured Khabib picking McGregor apart before submitting him in the fourth round, then suddenly jumping out of the octagon cage and into the crowd to attack Dillon Danis, a member of McGregor’s team who was sitting cage side and allegedly taunting Khabib.
Chaos ensued afterwards and members of Khabib’s team jumped in the cage to attack McGregor. Suspensions will likely be given out, loss of purse and titles are also a possibility.
The sports world was divided. Were Khabib’s actions justified? Were his actions unexpected?
In order to attempt to understand Khabib, one first has to understand his background and where he is from, something that he was evidently trying to explain in his post fight explanation.
Khabib is from Dagestan, a Russian republic. It has been the forefront of Islamic Insurgency and ethnic tension since the 1990s. It borders Chechnya, the location of a severe conflict with Russia that often featured Chechen fighters infiltrating Dagestan to call for Jihad.
Khabib is a devout Sunni Muslim and well educated. He speaks several languages and is very proud of his culture and heritage.
Insults aimed at his religion or nation are not taken likely. I’m not arguing that Khabib is a terrorist or that he supports armed violent jihad, but pointing out that disrespect against his religion is taken very seriously.
So should we have been surprised by Khabib’s actions? Well, if you had some general knowledge about the region he is from, probably not. McGregor is notorious for his trash talking, but when he insulted Khabib he questioned the support Khabib has in his nation, mocked Khabib by offering him alcohol even though he’s a Muslim who does not drink, and called his manager a terrorist rat.
Khabib has been exposed to religious warfare and terrorism, and to lump him and his team with real terrorists was undoubtedly an insult that he could not ignore.
Khabib claims Dillon Danis hurled Muslim insults at him after the fight and that’s why he jumped over the fence, a claim Danis denies. But nobody should have been surprised that Khabib was still fired up after his fight with McGregor was over.
“I know my father’s gonna smash me when I go home because…I know he’s gonna smash me.”-Khabib Nurmagomedov
“I think that for Khabib, the most severe sanctions would be my regard. I am going to regard this severely. I warned him. For me, the most important thing is discipline. You can do whatever you want in the octagon, but beyond its barrier-this is the border separating civilians, there are children, women, bystanders.
This fight took place within the octagon. That’s the spectacle But I am categorically against fighting outsid the octagon. Outside of the octagon, you need to exist peacefully. Fight in the octagon.”
Now for the million dollar, or two million dollar question. Were his actions justified?
Pre-fight trash talk has been a part of combat sports for years. McGregor and Mayweather’s trash talk was probably more entertaining than the actual fight itself.
But even though Mayweather and McGregor insulted each other greatly leading up to the fight, they were able to be cordial in the post fight interviews.
It’s difficult to find too many situations where a fighter leaped into the crowd immediately after a fight to engage someone in the crowd.
But there has been several situations where members of a boxer’s team jumped in a cage to start a brawl, and they were usually dealt with by the commission harshly.
Roger Mayweather jumped in the ring when Floyd fought Zab Judah and was hit with a low blow and a punch behind the head. An all out melee ensued when members from both camps entered the ring and brawled. Afterwards, Yoel Judah was fined $100,000 and had his license revoked for a year. Roger Mayweather was fined $200,000 and had his license revoked for one year. Leonard Ellerbe was fined $50,000 and had his license revoked for four months. Even Zab Judah received a fine of $350,000 and had his license revoked for a year.
Another example of a brawl happening in boxing was during the riot during the first Riddick Bowe/Andrew Golota fight. The fight was stopped after Golota landed several low blows on Bowe after repeated warnings. Members of Bowe’s security team jumped in the ring and went after Golota.
Rock Newman, Bowe’s manager and promoter, was suspended for a year and fined $250,000 for the incident.
More recently, one would have to look at the fight between Jose Uzcategui and Andre Dirrell, which featured Leon Lawson Jr., the Uncle of Dirrell, sucker punch Uzcategui. Lawson was suspended by the Maryland State Athletic Commission and faced criminal charges as a result.
Of course, one of the most famous post fight brawls or sucker punches was when James Butler sucker punched Richard Grant on ESPN after he lost his fight. He was charged with assault and suspended. In fact, he served four months at Rikers Island as a result.
Were his actions, jumping into the crowd to attack bystanders, justified? Precedent by athletic commission for boxers and members of their team behaving poorly and attacking fighters after a sanctioned fight is over are usually dealt with harshly.
There really isn’t any specific precedent to determine if the actions of Khabib were justified, but it appears likely that the commission won’t find any justification for a fighter to jump into a crowd to start a wild brawl, and will also likely deal with him harshly.
Justified? Also no.
Khabib’s punishment awaits.
Media Still Insists On Comparing McGregor To Ali
By: Sean Crose
One of the interesting things that got lost in the madness leading up to Conor McGregor’s MMA superfight with Khabib Nurmagomadedov last weekend was McGregor being compared to Muhammad Ali before the media. To his credit, McGregor squashed the talk. One might think that would have been that, especially since McGregor was all but wiped out in his subsequent fight with Nurmagomedov last Saturday.
One would have been wrong.
Mere days after the UFC’s biggest star essentially got steamrolled in the octagon, there are those in the media still banging the McGregor-Ali drum. The latest? Yahoo running a piece comparing the McGregor-Nurmagomedov rivalry to that of Ali and Frazier. Let’s be frank – the comparison is a stretch. Frazier barely bested Ali in the first of their three matches. The two subsequent Ali-Frazier bouts (which Ali won) were likewise brutal and razor thin.
McGregor has only met Nurmagomedov in the octagon once to date, and with the exception of a single round, the Irishman was dominated. You don’t need to be Sherlock Holmes to deduce the obvious…McGregor got outclassed last weekend. He lost, just as he had lost numerous times before. Ali lost, too, but never in as one sided a manner as McGregor did against Nurmagomedov. It took an illness and 38 years for Ali to suffer the kind of one sided embarrassment to Larry Holmes that a 30 year old McGregor just suffered to his Russian foil.
A bit of hard truth….McGregor simply isn’t as good a mixed martial artist as Ali was a boxer. He just isn’t. And that simple fact should preclude any comparison between the two men right from the get go. McGregor may be better at mind games – though that’s arguable – but there might have been 10 other boxers in Ali’s time who were better than Ali at mind games. We’d never know who they were because they most likely wouldn’t have been as great as Ali when it came down to skill.
Despite what some say, talk isn’t cheap…at least not on all occasions. A great fighter, though, must consistently fight at least as good as he or she talks. And McGregor doesn’t do that. Not consistently he doesn’t. Not anymore. One doesn’t have to delve into social issues to see McGregor and Ali are like apples and oranges. One can simply keep the argument to the ring and to the octagon. It’s not bias to claim McGregor is no Ali. It’s just a relatively small act of honesty. The world of mixed martial arts may indeed produce the next Ali, and there will be nothing wrong with it if it does.
Just don’t expect it to be Conor McGregor.
UFC 229 Results: Khabib Submits McGregor and Immediately Shames MMA
By: William Holmes
The T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada was the host site for the biggest UFC PPV of 2018, featuring a main event between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor for the UFC Lightweight Title.
Photo Credit: UFC Twitter Account
The arena was starting to fill by the time of the first fight of the main card of the ppv, a strawweight woman’s bout between Michelle Waterson (15-6) and Felice Herrig (14-7).
Waterson opened up with using her kicks more like jabs and was effective with her front leg side kick to the thigh. Herrig was able to land a solid straight right in the opening round, but Waterson was more effective with her strikes.
Herrig was able to get Waterson’s back against the cage in the early moments of the second round, but Waterson was eventually able to break free and land a hard high kick to the head of Herrig before throwing her to the ground. Waterson was able to finish the second round with some strong ground and pound.
Herrig was able to find some success in the third round with her dirty boxing and was able to defend one of Waterson’s takedown attempts and maintain control on top. But Waterson was able to land some hard elbows from the bottom and briefly threatened with an omoplata.
The final scores were 30-26, 29-28, and 30-27 for Michelle Waterson.
The next bout of the night was a heavyweight bout between Former M1 Heavyweight Champion Alexander Volkov (29-6) and Derrick Lewis (20-5) .
Volkov was the much taller fighter and was controlling the first round with his reach and counter right hands. He was able to get side mount and transition to taking the back of Lewis, but Lewis was able to regain top position and land some short elbows as the round ended.
Volkov was able to stun Lewis with a combination in the opening minutes of the second round and had the left eye of Lewis swollen. Lewis took several hard shots but was able to stay on his feet.
Lewis took several hard right hands form Volkov in first half of the third round but showed he had a strong chin and took his best shots. Lewis looked like he was going towards a decision loss but he landed a devastating right cross followed by some concussive ground and pound that turned off the lights of Volkov.
Derrick Lewis wins by shocking knockout at 4:49 of the third round.
The next bout of the night was between Ovince Saint Preux (22-11) and Dominick Reyes (9-0) in the light heavyweight division.
Reyes, a southpaw, exchanged body kicks with Saint Preux in the opening round and was able to stuff the takedown attempts of Saint Preux. Reyes was able to land some short elbows to the side of Saint Preux’s head on some of the takedown attempts, and had Ferguson is applying pressure. Lands a hard straight right.
By the second round Reyes had landed six times the number of strikes that Saint Preux had landed, and had the forehead of Saint Preux badly bleeding. Saint Preux looked exhausted near the end of the second and Reyes had built a comfortable lead.
Saint Preux needed a stoppage in the final round to pull out the victory and he did press the action, but Reyes was able to fight wisely and suddenly landed a stunning left cross to the chin of Saint Preux that sent him crashing to the mat as the round came to an end.
Dominick Reyes wins by decision with scores of 30-27 on all three scorecards.
The co-main event of the night was between Tony Ferguson (25-3) and Anthony Pettis (21-7) in the lightweight division.
Ferguson looked like the significantly bigger man but was hobbled by leg kicks from Pettis early on. Ferguson and Pettis both tried spinning back fists in the opening round and were able to land hard shots, but Ferguson was landing the harder shots.
Pettis was able to drop Ferguson early in the second round, who had blood pouring out of his mouth from the shots of Pettis. Ferguson was able to cut Pettis to and get back to his feet and recover, and continued to apply continuous pressure and pound on Pettis from cage side to cage side. Pettis had a cut by his hairline and the ringside doctor took a look at it but allowed the fight to continue. Pettis got tagged badly several times as the round came to an end.
When Pettis went back to his corner he told his corner he broke his hand and his corner stopped the fight
Tony Ferguson wins by TKO at the end of the second round due to a broken right hand on Anthony Pettis.
The main event was between Khabib Nurmagomedov (26-0) and Conor McGregor (21-3) for the UFC Lightweight Title.
McGregor, despite being the bigger draw, entered the Octagon first to a positive fan reaction and Khabib entered second to mainly boos and jeers.
McGregor pressed forward in the opening round and was able to land an overhand right and some low leg kicks. Khabib went immediately for a takedown and McGregor was able to immediately stop it. Khabib completed the takedown and finished the round on top of McGregor but was not able to do much damage from there.
McGregor got tagged with an unexpected vicious overhand right in the second round by Khabib that had McGregor mometarily hurt. Both were throwing hard, wild punches and Khabib goes in for a takedown and is able to finish it. Khabib lands some hard ground and pound through the remainder of the round and at one point threatens McGregor with a kimura but doesn’t finish it.
McGregor had a much better third round and was able to tag Khabib with several combinations and stuffed his takedown attempts. McGregor appeared to gain some momentum this round and Khabib showed signs of tiring.
Khabib appeared fired up at the end of the third round and was yelling at McGregor as he went back to his corner.
Khabib opened up the fourth round by throwing a wild two punch combination but missed wildly, and McGregor was able to land with a two punch combination of his own. Khabib goes in for a takedown and completes it and transitions into a full mount. Khabib lands some heavy ground and pound before before taking McGregor’s back and sinking in a rear naked choke.
McGregor is forced to tap and Khabib doesn’t immediately let go. As Khabib rises to his feet he appears to spit in the direction of McGregor and immediately begins yelling at the corner of McGregor.
Khabib, who just had the biggest win of his career, then goes nuclear and jumps out of the octagon and goes after one of McGregor’s cornermen and starts a fight in the crowd.
All hell breaks loose and one of Khabib’s teammates jumps in the ring and begins unloading on McGregor. It takes several minutes before officials are able to restore order.
Khabib, still enraged, demands his belt but Dana White refuses to put it on him. Khabib is escorted out of the cage and into the back with a lengthy suspension almost certainly to follow.
A career defining win for Khabib turns into one of the most shameful moments in MMA history.
UFC 229 Preview: Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Conor McGregor
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada will host the biggest pay per view of the year in either boxing or MMA as the UFC Lightweight Title will be up for grabs when undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov faces Conor McGregor in the main event of the evening.
McGregor is the UFC’s biggest draw, and Khabib is McGregor’s toughest test to date in MMA. This blockbuster event will be getting a lot of attention in the mainstream media leading up to Saturday.
The co-main event of the evening will be between Anthony Pettis and Tony Ferguson in the lightweight division. The winner of this bout will likely be in line for a future title shot against the winner of Khabib and McGregor.
Photo Credit: UFC Twitter Account
The undercard has some intriguing fights throughout. Ovince Saint Preux will face Dominick Reyes in the light heavyweight division, Derrick Lewis will face Alexander Volkov in the heavyweight division, Sergio Pettis will face Jussier Formiga in the flyweight division, and Michelle Waterson will face Felice Herrig in the Women’s Straweight division.
The UFC tends to show more fights on their pay per view offerings than boxing so five fights will likely be televised.
The following is a preview of the co-main event and the main event of the night.
Anthony Pettis (21-7) vs. Tony Ferguson (23-3); Lightweights
The winner of the co-main event of the night will likely move on to a future title shot.
Anthony Pettis was once considered a top rated contender, but he has struggled recently and has only gone 3-3 in his last six fights, and actually has a losing record of 3-5 in his last eight fights.
Tony Ferguson has been on a roll and is currently riding a ten fight win streak. However, his activity is of some concern as he has only fought three times since the beginning of 2016, while Pettis has fought seven times since the beginning of 2016.
Ferguson is 34 years old and three years older than Pettis. Ferguson will have a very slight two inch height advantage on Pettis.
Both fighters like to finish their fight. Of Pettis’ 21 victories, 17 have come by way of stoppage. 18 of Ferguson’s victories have come by way of stoppage.
There really is no such thing as an easy fight in the UFC. Pettis has defeated the likes of Michael Chiesa, Jim Miller, Charles Oliveira, Gilbert Melendez, and Benson Henderson. His losses were to Rafael Dos Anjos, Eddie Alvarez, Edson Barboza, Max Holloway, and Dustin Poirier.
Ferguson’s only losses were to Michael Johnson and two lesser known fighters very early in his career. He has defeated the likes of Kevin Lee, Rafael Dos Anjos, Edson Barboza, Josh Thomson, Gleison Tibau, Abel Trujillo, and Danny Castillo.
Pettis might have a slight edge in striking, but Ferguson has a strong edge in grappling. Ferguson was a NCWA Collegiate National Champion in Wrestling and was a high school state champion in Michigan. Pettis didn’t pick up on grappling until later on in his life.
Ferguson should win this fight by decision. He’s never been stopped by strikes in his career, and that’s Anthony Pettis’ best weapon.
Khabib Nurmagomedov (26-0) vs. Conor McGregor (21-3); UFC Lightweight Championship
As stated earlier, there really is no such thing as an easy fight in the UFC, and that’s why it’s very impressive for Khabib Nurmagomedov to have an undefeated record.
Khabib is a fighter with a very strong grappling background. He was born in Dagestan, Russia and has never lost. His win streak currently stands at 26 victories in a row.
Both Khabib and McGregor are 30 years old, though Khabib will have a two inch height advantage on McGregor.
Khabib has a history of injuries and trouble making weight, though he has made weight for this weekend. 16 of his 26 wins were by stoppage, with eight by TKO and eight by submission.
McGregor’s excitement as a fighter is much more than his personality. Of McGregor’s 21 victories, 18 have come by TKO/KO and one by submission. Only two of his wins were by judges decision.
Neither fighter can consider themselves to be super active since 2016. Khabib fought once in 2018, once in 2017, and twice in 2016. McGregor did not fight yet in an MMA cage in 2018 or 2017. He fought three times in 2016 and was last seen competing in a boxing ring when he was stopped by Floyd Mayweather Jr.
McGregor has beaten the likes of Eddie Alvarez, Nate Diaz, Jose Aldo, Chad Mendes, Dennis Silver, Dustin Poirier, and Max Holloway. His losses were to Joseph Duffy, Nate Diaz, and Artemij Sitenkov.
Nobody has ever beaten Khabib. He has defeated the likes of Al Iaquinta, Edson Barboza, Michael Johnson, Darrel Horcher, Rafael Dos Anjos, Thiago Tavares, and Gleison Tibau.
One of the biggest factors that jumps out at this writer is that McGregor’s three losses were all by submission and he’s facing a fighter who’s known for being a very strong grappler. Khabib has finished 8 previous opponents by submission.
If McGregor is going to win he’ll have to stop Khabib with strikes, it’s difficult to imagine him keeping the fight standing for five rounds.
Even though McGregor recently signed a lucrative contract extension with the UFC and is their most popular fighter, his recent inactivity and weakness in grappling will likely be issues that Khabib will exploit.
This writer feels that Khabib’s strengths will make for a very bad matchup for McGregor on Saturday.
McGregor Claims He’ll Take What He Learned Boxing Into Octagon
By: Sean Crose
“I’ve been on both sides of the world,” Conor McGregor said during a Thursday press conference to promote his UFC superfight with Khabib Nurmagomedov. “I’ve been on the boxing side and I’ve been on this side.” Rather than blow off last year’s fight with Floyd Mayweather, where he was stopped in the tenth round by the fighter known as “Money” in the boxing ring, McGregor made it clear to the media that he’s willing to take what he’s learned from the sweet science and bring it into the octagon.
“We are looking forward to showcasing to the world what I have learned from my boxing venture,” McGregor said, “and through my return to mma with this boxing venture.” No one would deny that McGregor certainly benefited financially from his foray into boxing, for the man reportedly earned roughly one hundred million dollars fighting Mayweather. “From the last match,” McGregor said, “I’m set for life.” Nurmagomedov himself enjoyed mentioning McGregor’s bout with Mayweather. “After this fight he goes back to boxing,” the undefeated Russian claimed.
The press conference was certainly a heated, sometimes tedious affair, with McGregor behaving over top and perhaps a bit inebriated as he drank his own brand of “Proper” whiskey before the media. “This is a direct competitor to Jameson,” the outspoken Dubliner said, in reference to the famous Irish whiskey. The main topic of conversation, however, remained the grudge match the two fighters are set to have in a few weeks. “When he’s tired, he always gives up,” said Nurmagomedov in his broken English. “He move to box(ing) and he tap there.”
When asked directly about the Mayweather fight, McGregor – who loves to taunt his competition during such affairs – became serious and seemingly respectful. “It was a great match,” he said of the Mayweather bout, “it was a great boxing match…30 minutes, my longest contest that was.” The biggest star in mma then went on. “I learned some things,” he added of his ring experience. “Of course you take with you from every fight, you learn and grow. I was very happy with the experience as a whole.” When asked what he thought of Mayweather’s warning that McGregor fears no one, Nurmagomedov had a ready reply. “I am the Floyd Mayweather of MMA,” he said. “You’re a door box.” McGregor snapped back.
“You’ll see on October 6th,” McGregor claimed, “the lessons I have learned.”
Media Speculates On Possibility Of Mayweather-McGregor Rematch
By: Sean Crose
ESPN, SN Sports, and undoubtedly other outlets have been talking, as it were. The subject? Mayweather-McGregor. No, you haven’t stepped into a time machine, and it isn’t 2017. You’re right here, in September of 2018. And if you thought the Mayweather-McGregor silliness ended with their insanely lucrative novelty fight last year, well, it looks like you’re mistaken. The two have been trading jabs on Twitter, you see. What’s more, McGregor, who was stopped by Mayweather in last year’s bout, has made it more than clear he wants another shot at the pound for pound great.
First, though, McGregor has to get by an undefeated and feared rival in his home sport of mixed martial arts. Khabib Nurmagomedov is the unbeaten UFC lightweight champion of the world and a notable, high energy wrestler. He and McGregor will be crossing swords this October in Vegas in a fight a considerable percentage of UFC followers expect McGregor to actually lose. The Irishman has, if you include the Mayweather bout, lost two of his last four professional contests. What’s more, some feel he should have lost his UFC rematch against Nate Diaz in 2016, as well (McGregor lost their first war by submission). Add that to the fact the UFCs biggest star hasn’t entered a professional contest in over a year, and it’s obvious there’s questions that await answers.
Should McGregor win against Nurmagomedov in the fall, however, people may start calling for a rematch with his most famous opponent in earnest. It might make sense to Mayweather and McGregor to fight again – at least to Mayweather and McGregor. Mayweather would still probably win and even if he lost, who could blame him at his age and activity level? As for McGregor – well, let’s face it, the guy has been in some real wars. His body took a ton of wear and tear in his two matches against the surly Diaz. What’s more, an unspoken aspect of the Mayweather-McGregor fight was the fact that Mayweather dished out a whole lot of head trauma to his novice foe that night. McGregor endured quite a beating from Mayweather, make no mistake about it. And a person can only suffer so much damage (or outside the ring/cage antics) before it all really starts to take it’s toll. Sooner or later, it may be wise to just cash in.
So maybe a second fight with the great Mayweather does indeed make all the sense in the world to those involved. That’s not the case for others, though. Once was surely enough as far as many are concerned, thanks very much. Not that the first match didn’t turn out to be kind of fun. McGregor did fine, all things considered, and Mayweather broke what seemed to be his own rules by making things exciting. Still, the collective groan can already be heard saying “let it go already.” There’s undoubtedly millions who would pay to see Mayweather and McGregor do it all over again, however, for a hundred dollars or so a pop on pay per view.
Which is why it might be wise not to write this rematch off as something that’s never going to happen.