The speculation around the combat sports world is that the potential mega fight between boxing legend Floyd Mayweather and MMA superstar Conor McGregor is very close to being finalized. The fight could potentially take place at the end of this year.
Last week Dana White confirmed on TNT during their postgame coverage of game one of Celtics-Cavaliers that the McGregor side of the deal was done and that he was going to work on negotiating a deal with Al Heyman and Mayweather Promotions in the upcoming days. There still has been no word on any potential deal made between White and Mayweather’s camp yet.
That did not stop boxing legend and Golden Boy Promotions founder Oscar De La Hoya from blasting the potential mega fight. He did not hold back his strong feelings towards the fight in an open letter to boxing fans, suggesting that the fight is nothing but a circus and that the fans should protect boxing by not supporting this fight.
“To my fellow boxing fans, I write in the hopes that together we can protect the sport of boxing,” De La Hoya wrote. “With each passing day, it looks more and more likely that the circus known as Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor will be coming to town in the near future. As undercard fights start to take form, athletic commissions give their blessings in exchange for millions of dollars, and the fighters start counting even more cash, one group will eventually be left to make sure this farce doesn’t occur — we, the fans, who are the lifeblood of our sport.” (Courtesy of ESPN.com)
Boxing fans have enjoyed a pretty entertaining first half of 2017 with big fights such as Anthony Joshua-Wladimir Klitschko, Keith Thurman-Danny Garcia, Gennady Golovkin-Daniel Jacobs and Canelo Alvarez-Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. delivering big moments. De La Hoya fears that the potential Mayweather-McGregor fight would throw all of that away due to a simple money grab circus that will, in the long run, not be good for the sport of boxing.
De La Hoya and his Golden Boy Promotions are getting ready to promote the other potential biggest fight of the year, a showdown between two of the best pound for pound fighters in the world, Canelo Alvarez versus Gennady Golovkin. That fight is scheduled to take place on September 16th live on pay per view.
This would not be the first “mega fight” in Mayweather’s career. In May 2015, he finally squared off with Manny Pacquiao in the biggest pay per view fight of all time. Destroying the previous pay per view record, the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight eclipsed over 4.4 million buys and generated more than $400 million in total revenue (ESPN.com). That fight, however, did not fulfill the very high expectations of boxing fans, as many were left disappointed with the lack of action in the fight.
De La Hoya was one of those fans who was left disappointed by a Mayweather mega fight, and fears that another one against an opponent who has zero boxing experience could leave a permanent black eye on the sport.
“But if you thought Mayweather/Pacquiao was a black eye for our sport — a matchup between two of the best pound-for-pound fighters that simply didn’t deliver — just wait until the best boxer of a generation dismantles someone who has never boxed competitively at any level — amateur or professional,” De La Hoya wrote. “Our sport might not ever recover.” (Courtesy of ESPN.com)
Mayweather’s last fight was a blowout unanimous decision victory against Andre Berto in September 2015. He has made it clear that he will not come out of retirement for any fight other than McGregor. As it stands right now, Floyd Mayweather is 49-0 with 26 KOs, the greatest professional boxing record of all time.
McGregor holds an impressive 21-3 MMA record. He recently applied to a boxing license in Nevada where the fight would most likely take place if agreed upon. There is no date set as of this point.
De La Hoya wants boxing fans to know that he would love to see Mayweather fight again, just against a worthy opponent. He simply believes that him fighting an amateur boxer at best is a money grab and nothing more than that.
“But my interest is in the health of boxing as a whole. It always has been. And if Floyd were to come out of retirement to take on someone like Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman, Errol Spence or some other top welterweight, not only would I applaud the fight, I’d be the first one on line for a ticket. That kind of fight is what the fans — and I am a fan first — deserve. Which brings me back to the circus. Floyd’s and Conor’s motivation is clear. It’s money.” (Courtesy of ESPN.com)
As mentioned previously, there is no official agreement between Mayweather and McGregor. However, it is looking more and more likely that a fight between the two will take place as early as the end of 2017 in Las Vegas.
Featured Image via Remezcla