The speculation has ended, and now details on the extravaganza that is Mayweather v McGregor are coming thick and fast.
With the cat out of the bag, it’s finally time to see Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor in a boxing ring as more than a pipe dream (or nightmare, depending on your view). To that end, Leonard Ellerbe – Mayweather Promotions CEO, Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President & General Manager of Showtime Sports and UFC President Dana White took calls from assorted media regarding the August 26 showdown at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Dana White took the bulk of the questions, and was asked if a Conor McGregor loss damages his brand along with the UFC’s, with the UFC President responding that if anything it elevates the Irishman, with so much to lose now that he is in “Floyd’s world”.
Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sport, who broke the news of the fight, asked if the fight’s revenue could break the half a billion mark. Leonard Ellerbe responded in the affirmative, declaring that the fan interest was similar to that of the 2015 Manny Pacquiao bout, which generated revenue in that lofty region. Stephen Espinoza added that the mainstream interest was unprecedented, due to the nature of the competition & men involved, separating it from even the Pacquiao fight.
As for potential pay-per-view numbers, he remarked that the sky is the limit, with no sporting event of this magnitude taking place to date.
Ellerbe: This is a total different feel than there was for the Pacquiao fight. This has the unknown factor.
— Kevin Iole (@KevinI) June 15, 2017
Due to the confidentiality clause on the contract, there is no word on the money that either man will make, though complaints are unlikely to be forthcoming.
“Nobody is bummed out about this deal, everyone’s happy,” said White.
The price of the 2015 May/Pac clash caused must consternation among fans, with a $100 fee for a fight that disappointed many. Asked about the average fan being priced out again this time around, Dana White was more positive, but did claim that the extraordinary circumstances of this bout meant that the normal PPV rate could not be charged.
“Everyone learned from May/Pac. It was so big that mistakes were inevitably made, but the fight still did alright despite the complaints”
Though Showtime have had an exclusivity deal with Mayweather, they did co-promote with HBO on the Pacquiao fight, and a similar deal is envisaged here with White stating that the UFC would promote the event, confirming that the popular UFC Embedded series will feature in the build-up.
One wonders what Demetrious Johnson makes of the UFC doing feature promotion of an event that isn’t even an MMA fight.
Elsewhere, the possibility of a cross-sport commentary team remains open, with the possibility that Showtime commentator Mauro Ranallo will lead the broadcast. The undercard will be all straight boxing, as Ellerbe added that the fights would feature all boxers. Espinoza did tease however that there might be some interesting things taking place in what he termed an “entertaining afternoon and evening of legitimate fights”.
On the Notorious One’s future with the UFC, White claimed that McGregor is determined to defend his lightweight belt by the end of year, but did add a caveat that there’s no guarantee anyone will fight again however, with no commitment to do so in the contract. There’s also no language in the contract regarding a possible rematch.The eagerly awaited press conference date will be figured out in next 6/7 days
As for the last word on proceedings, we leave a quote that White says McGregor declared to him on Wednesday morning.
— Mayweather Promotions (@MayweatherPromo) June 15, 2017
You can catch the entire media scrum below via the UFC on YouTube.