Floyd Mayweather seems to think Conor McGregor has a better shot of beating him than almost all of the 49 opponents he’s already faced.
The undefeated boxer who came out of retirement to face McGregor on Aug. 26 touted all the reasons why the current UFC lightweight champion should be favored to defeat him when they step into the ring together in less than three weeks time.
Despite McGregor having no professional boxing experience and many experts believing he will get outclassed by Mayweather over 12 rounds, the former multi-division champion seems to think otherwise…or at least that’s what he’s saying.
“He’s very gifted,” Mayweather said about McGregor when speaking to ESPN. “I want to say this — he’s a lot younger. When you look at the two on paper, when you look at myself and you look at Conor McGregor on paper, he’s taller, has longer reach, he’s a bigger man from top to bottom. A lot younger, so youth is on his side and I’ve been off a couple years.
“Now I’m in my 40’s. So if you look at everything on paper, it leans towards Conor McGregor.”
Mayweather is singing a much different tune from the one he touted during the four-city world tour he did alongside McGregor just a few weeks ago where he promised to knock out the UFC fighter in spectacular fashion.
Of course, Mayweather has notoriously built up many of his past opponents who were heavy underdogs going into fights with him as he looked to drum up interest in pay-per-view sales.
Despite all the praise he heaped on McGregor this week, Mayweather promises he’s still got some fight left in him.
“I didn’t say I couldn’t fight,” Mayweather said. “I just said I’m not the same Floyd Mayweather I once was.”
While Mayweather went out of his way to explain why McGregor is such a tough opponent, the argument still exists that the fight is a mismatch between one of the greatest boxers of all time against a fighter who has never competed professional in the same sport.
McGregor is undoubtedly one of the best mixed martial artists on the planet but the top football players in the NFL wouldn’t automatically be considered the best in the world in rugby simply because the sports are somewhat similar.
Still, Mayweather defends the matchup by saying that no other fight made sense for him, especially considering he was coming out of retirement at a time when he truly believed his career was over.
“In combat sports there’s only two names right now at the top in combat sports. Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor,” Mayweather said.
“Even when I was away from the sport for two years, still in boxing all you hear is Floyd Mayweather and in MMA you hear Conor McGregor.”