Some people seem to be of the opinion that Floyd Mayweather Jr. is taking Conor McGregor lightly ahead of the pair’s cross-codes super-fight in Las Vegas on August 26th.
And it’s easy to understand why.
Showtime’s All Access: Mayweather vs. McGregor series included very little footage of boxing’s former pound for pound king actually training and quite a lot of footage of the 40-year-old taking in down time. Last week, via Twitter, Mayweather announced that he will spend every night of fight week “partying” at his gentleman’s club ‘Girl Collection’. And in the second episode of UFC’s Mayweather vs. McGregor: Embedded vlog series, the Las Vegas-resident was shown scoffing down Burger King, something he made quite a song and dance about.
However, the cynic might suggest that Mayweather has personally authored and furthered this narrative in an effort to help sell the fight.
The cynic is probably right.
For all his shortcomings, Mayweather has always been a tireless trainer and a consummate professional – that cheesy ‘Hard work, dedication!’ spiel he busts out at every media event is something he really believes in. It’s unlikely then, that Mayweather has become a slacker all of a sudden ahead of his 50th professional outing. Yes, his opponent is making his professional boxing debut and is seen by most within the boxing community as a complete no-hoper, but that very fact means that Mayweather’s impressive legacy is on the line like never before. So, this is no time for complacency and he knows it.
If you still aren’t sold on the idea that Mayweather has simply been trying to sell you on an idea, check out these recent utterances from British super-middleweight pugilist Chris Eubank Jr.
“From what I’ve seen Floyd is in tremendous shape,” Eubank, who has been training alongside Mayweather in Las Vegas for the last several weeks, told FightHubTV. “You know, I’ve watched him train for [Marcos] Maidana, I watched him train for [Manny] Pacquiao, and I watched him train for McGregor and in my opinion he’s in just as good shape as he was for those opponents. So he’s not taking the fight lightly.
“Conor hasn’t had a fight in the professional ranks as a boxer but Floyd is treating this fight like, you know, he’s about to go in there with the number one contender. So I expect there to be some serious action on the night(transcription via BadLeftHook).”
Unlike the vast majority of those in the boxing community, Eubank Jr. and his famous father Chris Eubank Sr. have refused to rubbish the fight or McGregor. However, Junior is still pretty confident that Mayweather will emerge victorious on Saturday night.
“I can only see that Floyd is going to be victorious just because we have nothing to base Conor’s boxing abilities on,” said Eubank, who fights Avni Yildirim in the quarter finals of the World Boxing Super Series on October 7th. “We don’t know what he is. And we know that Floyd is one of the best, ever. So you can’t really say that Conor’s got much of a chance of winning. Obviously anything can happen but, if you’re a betting man the smart money is on Floyd.”
If you are still looking for a reason to believe McGregor can pull off this gargantuan upset, look to the notion that he might flummox Mayweather early with unothodox movement and timing, giving him enough time to land something big on an aging fighter. But don’t kid yourself into thinking that McGregor’s chances have been strengthened by a lack of focus or intensity on Mayweather’s behalf.
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