They Are Calling Conor McGregor Crazy?
Saturday 26th August, 11.26 pm, PDT. A packed out T-Mobile Arena is still in shock at what they have witnessed; Conor McGregor is atop the middle turnbuckle wrapped in the Irish flag. Basking in the glory at doing the unthinkable. He has just stopped the best boxer of the last 20 years… imagine. Like straight out of a movie the thought of Conor McGregor winning seems only apt for a Hollywood screenwriter’s imagination.
99.9% of the world think it is a foregone conclusion and I agree it should be a night that Floyd goes to 50-0… but here’s the thing whenever something with Conor McGregor should happen. He always flips things on their head. When I say it out loud it sounds insane, but I actually genuinely believe Conor will knock him out.
Hate it or love it, the fight is on. It has already garnered massive attention globally and we haven’t even had the first press conference!
Everyone has an opinion on the bout, from the hardcore boxing fans and the media’s perspective. It is a complete mismatch and puts a black mark on their sport.
49 opponents have tried to work out the ‘May-vinci’ code and each and everyone has been unable to find the key to victory.
The bulk of the MMA world has also add their concerns and feel that Conor will be exposed and if the towel isn’t thrown in, he will be outclassed from round 1 through to 12.
The McGregor Hype Train
Before I give my two cents I want to stress that boxing was my first great love and still is a massive part of my life. I have been a boxing fan as long as I can possibly remember and I’m not a new wave ‘UFC bro’. Who has just joined the hype train with ‘McGregor- Mania’ – despite this. Conor’s career trajectory has been something that has fascinated me and does believe we are witnessing a once in a generation athlete before our very eyes. Every aspect of his game, psyche and preparation are awe-inspiring.
Floyd Mayweather is the greatest defensive boxer I have ever seen and is exactly what the ‘sweet-science’ all about – he lands lots of punches, doesn’t waste a lot in throwing them, and he’s extremely hard to hit. His skillset is world-class, his boxing IQ and timing are a joy to watch. Yes, he has benefited from picking and choosing his opponents, but he has still made the likes of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, Ricky ‘The Hitman’ Hatton and Arturo Gatti look amateurish.
For the past 15 years, he has had no equal both in terms of technical skill and from a financial perspective. However, he has his moments of ‘looking mortal’, ‘Sugar’ Shane Moseley caught him with a blistering shot that had him visibly wobbled.
The unheralded journeyman Emanuel Augustus gave a young Mayweather a torrid night until being stopped in round 9. Jose Luis Castillo had two opportunities to take the ‘0’ from Mayweather and utilized a pressure game that he struggled to cope with and truth be told, Mayweather was lucky to scrape with 2 wins.
Marcos Maidana non-stop aggression and volume of punches gave Mayweather another night he would want to forget, but like a true champion he eventually adjusted to Maidana’s ‘gung-ho’ style and was able to secure the majority-decision win. Come fight night Floyd will be 40 years old, with 2 years out of the ring after taking a mini-retirement, the one thing no man beats in sports is ‘father time’.
Eventually 20 years of hard training camps, and in addition, the lengthy hiatus would seem a disadvantage to any other man, but I give Floyd massive respect as he has proven time and time again to find a way to win. Against a non-boxer in Conor McGregor, you would expect him to pick his opponent off and evade trouble throughout the bout, but for me, this is a fight I think turns everything on its head.
In all his wins, Conor has shown unique timing and ability in being able to find a home for his left hand and every opponent who has been in the cage with Conor have remarked that his power is unexpected. In post-fight conference after beating Eddie Alvarez, Conor stated, “They have got to have size, reach, length, you have got to have some attributes. If you come in any way equal to me I am going to rip your head off, it happens every time.”
The fight has been set at 154lbs and come fight night I think Conor’s physicalities against Mayweather will be something similar to the Canelo v Floyd fight, with the Irishman being the much larger of the two. (Conor McGregor’s statistics are 5 ft. 9, 74inch reach and currently fights between 145lbs and 155lbs. Floyd Mayweather statistics are 5ft 8, 72-inch reach and has tended to fight between 147lbs and 154lbs)
So how could Conor realistically win?
Floyd in recent times has had a lot of issues with his hands and hasn’t knocked any opponent out since Victor Ortiz in 2011 (but Floyd took full advantage of the ‘protect yourself at all time’ ruling and hit Ortiz without him not knowing much about it). Realistically his last competitive knockout victory was against Ricky Hatton in 2007.
Conor has shown he has a granite chin, and with heavier gloves the danger in him being KO’d is marginal. He has to rely on all his unique brand of trash-talking at the first press conference and try to get into Floyd’s head.
Mayweather has seen it all in a 20-year career, but a barrage of insults from the fiery Irishman will be something he hasn’t seen. Come fight night Conor needs to bring it all with him, up in the clinch he needs to berate his opponent similar to the night he beat Chad Mendes. Every advantage possible to gain Conor should take at every opportunity.
Conor has shown he has a granite chin, and with heavier gloves the danger in him being KO’d is marginal. He has to rely on all his unique brand of trash-talking at the first press conference and try to get into Floyd’s head. Mayweather has seen it all in a 20-year career, but a barrage of insults from the fiery Irishman will be something he hasn’t seen.
Come fight night Conor needs to bring it all with him, up in the clinch he needs to berate his opponent similar to the night he beat Chad Mendes. Every advantage possible to gain Conor should take at every opportunity.
The gameplan should be to attack from the opening bell – he needs to do is get aggressive and dirty. Yes, he runs the risk of being deducted points, but his best tactic is to get in the clinch, get him up against the ropes and use his assumed greater strength to ‘ruffle up’ Mayweather. Castillo, Maidana and even Hatton in the early rounds of their bout had great success in taking Mayweather off-kilter.
The first 5 rounds are Conor’s key moments to ensure victory. I believe if it goes past this, he will tire considerably and by this stage of the fight could see Mayweather find his rhythm.
May Weather Figuring Out His Opponents
In Mayweather’s most recent bouts, it has taken longer to figure out his opponents and Conor needs to take advantage of this. The boxing media can scoff at Conor’s unique movement which the deem nothing compared to the skill set of Floyd, but make no mistake the opening round Conor will have Floyd in a state of confusion.
I can envision a cagey first round of no real action, but one at which Conor’s rangy style and bravado proving to be a head-scratcher for ‘The Money Team’. Round 2 will have Conor missing on a number of occasions and Floyd starting to come into his own, he’ll catch Conor a couple of times and they will be disregarded by Conor as merely slaps.
Round 3 will see things start to move up a notch, Conor will clinch in and he will shrug off Floyd in the corner. The referee will caution Conor for rabbit punches to the back of the head, and the round will close out with Floyd showing his almost sixth sense for evading the punches. Round 4 will see an exchange in the corner with Floyd trying to evade to the right before Conor manages to find home
And in Round 3
Round 3 will see things start to move up a notch, Conor will clinch in and he will shrug off Floyd in the corner. The referee will caution Conor for rabbit punches to the back of the head, and the round will close out with Floyd showing his almost sixth sense for evading the punches.
Round 4 will see an exchange in the corner with Floyd trying to evade to the right before Conor manages to find a home for the left, dropping Floyd who takes to a count of 8 before a barrage of unanswered shots gives the referee no option but to stop the fight. Then the silence. Conor shocks the world!
Wishful thinking right?! Absolutely, but one I would never bet against Conor from doing. This man has already won by achieving the unthinkable going for welfare to earning at least 100 million within 4 years. Bet against him to doing this at your own peril.
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