Floyd Mayweather is regarded as one of the greatest defensive boxers ever. The undefeated pugilist has confounded some of the toughest opposition on earth with his elusiveness, and most people expect more of the same when he boxes MMA export Conor McGregor on August 26.
Apparently, however, Mayweather plans to divert from the style for which he’s become known against McGregor. We will not be seeing the sly and slippery Mayweather we’re used to, but rather an aggressive, head-hunting version of him. At least, this is what he assured in a recent interview with ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith.
“This can’t be a defensive fight,” Mayweather said. “I’ve got to go to him, I’ve got to go to him. I have to go to him.”
“I’ve got to do what I’ve got to do,” he continued, when asked why he plans to break from his trademark style. “I owe the public for the [Manny] Pacquiao fight. Since they weren’t pleased with the Pacquiao fight, they’re going to be pleased with this fight right here.”
Mayweather then remarked on widespread comments that his record shouldn’t improve to 50-0 with a win because McGregor has never boxed professionally.
“It doesn’t matter if it’s 49, if it’s 50, even if it’s not on my boxing record,” he said. “Just give me the check.”
After Mayweather’s last fight, a 2015 decision defeat of Andre Berto, he elected to hang up the gloves. Yet this lucrative crossover fight with McGregor was apparently enough to pull him back to the ring.
When we last saw McGregor in the Octagon, he authored an artful knockout of Eddie Alvarez to win the UFC lightweight title. Given that he still owned the UFC featherweight title at that time, this made him the first fighter in promotional history to hold titles in two weight classes concurrently. He is 21-3 as a pro mixed martial artist, and 0-0 as a pro boxer.
Do you think Floyd Mayweather will knock Conor McGregor out?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 8/9/2017.