Life has been pretty good for Conor McGregor as of late.
“The Notorious” has climbed the UFC ranks, becoming the face of the industry in short time. And while McGregor has been a part of some exciting fights in his career, none of them hold a candle to his next bout.
After years of rumors, the superfight between McGregor and Floyd Mayweather Jr. finally is a reality. The two will square off in a boxing match Aug. 26 in Las Vegas in a battle of arguably the two most popular fighters in combat sports.
McGregor is a considerable underdog in the fight, as one would imagine. But when you really think about it, the UFC superstar really has nothing to lose.
Let’s call a spade a spade. There was one reason and one reason only why the two men agreed to fight: Money. McGregor has stated that he expects to earn around $100 million via the bout, and judging from the payouts of Mayweather’s high-profile clash with Manny Pacquiao, McGregor’s estimate might not be too far off.
But regardless of what the actual number is, McGregor’s earnings from the upcoming fight will be a massive upgrade from what he earns from UFC bouts. In fact, UFC president Dana White has said he wouldn’t be surprised if the fight against Mayweather is McGregor’s last, as he easily could see the UFC superstar ride off into the sunset after earning a massive paycheck.
And for the fight itself, no one is expecting McGregor to come out on top. Mayweather is a perfect 49-0 in his legendary boxing career. Expecting a UFC fighter to top arguably the greatest pound-for-pound boxer in a 12-round fight is a pretty sizable stretch of the imagination. It’s doubtful anyone would dwell on a McGregor defeat, even if he were to lose in embarrassing fashion.
That said, a “Notorious” victory would be one of the greatest sports upsets in recent memory. Sure, Mayweather will be pretty content with raking in a boatload of money, but there’s no denying a loss would tarnish his legacy. Only losing once in 50 fights is incredible, but having that one loss be to a fighter from a totally different sport would be a glaring blemish.
McGregor certainly has been the more active fighter. Mayweather’s last bout came in September 2015 when he defeated Andre Berto. McGregor, on the other hand, has fought four times since then. But even with a two-year hiatus from competition, it’s hard to imagine Mayweather has lost much of a step.
McGregor will be playing with house money when he walks into the ring later this summer. If he loses, he’ll have lost to one of boxing’s best with a considerably larger wallet. But if he somehow pulls out a win, he’ll own a résumé unlike anyone else in combat sports.
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