Boxing legend Teddy Atlas has praised Conor McGregor’s boxing performance against Floyd Mayweather – but admitted he isn’t sure how Kamaru Usman would fare.
The trend of stars from mixed martial arts heading into boxing has been around for a few years now with the first major example being when Conor McGregor crossed the threshold to battle Floyd Mayweather in 2017. While he came up on the losing end, many praised the Irishman for his performance on that night in Las Vegas.
Teddy Atlas, in a recent interview with The Schmo, gave his own thoughts on “The Notorious”.
“To the credit of McGregor, he was ahead,” Atlas said. “I know you guys are going to probably choke on your pecan pie that you’re having right now but he was ahead after four rounds. I was there for ESPN calling the fights, and I was there with the great Chael Sonnen sitting ringside and after four rounds he was ahead – he being McGregor – and there’s a reason for it: because he was using his reach.
“He’s a southpaw, he’s got long arms, he’s a counter puncher and he was staying outside with the counter punching, using his reach, using his jab. Four rounds, he was ahead. But then, of course, Mayweather did what he had to do in his realm to break him down, and he did, and he got to him. But the point I’m making is, styles make fights.”
Atlas went on to discuss the boxing prowess of UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
“He’s got physicality, he’s very strong, he’s a decent puncher and he’s not a bad striker – although I think a lot of his strengths are on the mat with his knowledge there and his physicality,” Atlas said. “You throw him in there with a B-level guy or even a good journeyman guy, no. I don’t want to upset anyone with the fans out there, but as long as the rules are strictly boxing, no he wouldn’t be able to have tremendous success there.”
Quotes via MMA Junkie
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