Floyd Mayweather Jr. is 49-0. It would behoove him to continue to do what’s worked for the last 20-plus years, especially since no one knows for sure how Conor McGregor’s fighting prowess is going to translate from the UFC octagon to the boxing ring.
Yet Mayweather has another idea.
Mayweather, who’s long been criticized for his defensive style, particularly since defeating Manny Pacquiao in a 12-round snoozefest back in May 2015, explained Tuesday in a sitdown interview with ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith that he intends to press the issue against McGregor on Aug. 26.
“This can’t be a defensive fight. I have to go to him,” Mayweather told Smith, per ESPN.com. “I owe the public because of the Pacquiao fight. They weren’t pleased with that. They’re gonna be pleased with this fight here.”
It’s entirely possible Mayweather is just trying to drum up interest for this month’s superfight. After all, he suggested in the same interview that McGregor actually has an advantage going into the fight despite the betting odds pegging Mayweather as the heavy favorite.
But it’s also possible Mayweather wants to make an example out of McGregor, proving that “The Notorious” doesn’t belong in the same ring and that he still can knock someone out at age 40 despite recording only one knockout victory — a controversial KO of Victor Ortiz in 2011 — since 2007.
“I used to have a 90 percent knockout ratio,” said Mayweather, who fully acknowledges he’s not the fighter he once was. “It’s obvious I slipped somewhere. Something has taken a toll on my career.”
With regards to style, maybe Mayweather should realize that if it ain’t broke, he probably shouldn’t fix it, even if a knockout win over McGregor would put an exclamation point on their long-standing feud.
Thumbnail photo via Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images
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