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What’s in it for Conor McGregor?

By on July 16, 2017

mayweather mcgregorThere’s one thing that has bothered me about this Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor stuff all along. That thing is actually a question. Specifically, what’s in it for Conor McGregor?

Let me be more specific. Because the obvious answer to “What’s in it for Conor?” is pretty simple. There’s a lot of money in it for him. He’s certainly going to get a lot of mainstream publicity out of it. But all that publicity is going to lead to a boxing match where he will almost certainly lose in convincing fashion. So what’s the point? Is it really that good to get a ton of press if the coverage is all about how you’re going to get your ass whooped?

I understood Conor talking shit because I never actually thought that the fight would happen. I never really thought that McGregor even wanted to make the fight happen. I just figured he wanted to get a little rub off of the notoriety and fame of Mayweather and maybe attract some attention from boxing fans who otherwise never checked out the UFC (if such a thing still exists).

But McGregor lost a “superfight” against Nate Diaz not all that long ago and then ended up in a tooth-and-nail battle in the rematch. Is it really the right time to take another loss, even in a sport that doesn’t represent your specialty?

Then I thought about it some more. More specifically, I thought about how the fight is likely to go. Let’s think about Floyd Mayweather for a minute, shall we?

He hasn’t knocked someone out since the cheap shot against Victor Ortiz a whopping six years ago. Since then, he has been under near constant criticism by boxing fans for not facing the best possible challengers and when he did fight, not actively pursuing knockouts, employing a rather safe, defensive strategy instead.

So Mayweather, despite being a huge box office draw, is not overwhelmingly popular even among boxing fans, as many think he’s gotten boring and started fighting too “safe.”

What’s likely to happen in the fight? McGregor is likely to come right at Mayweather, throwing barrages of strikes that may or may not land as Mayweather fights his usual smart, defensive fight. McGregor needs to make it a brawl, so that’s what he’ll try to do. However, Mayweather will doubtlessly take round after round en route to a pretty clear decision. The fans probably won’t be happy. But they won’t be mad at McGregor.

And that’s when I realized why this is a great fight for McGregor. By chasing down Mayweather and attempting to make the fight a brawl, he’ll win over boxing fans even in a losing effort. And he can afford to lose if the loss is via a dull decision. What he can’t afford to do is be outclassed and knocked out in a one-sided fight. So if he sees the final bell in a rather dull fight, it’s not a terrible outcome for McGregor as long as he looks to push the action in the eyes of the fans.

So McGregor ultimately loses, but he makes millions in his biggest payday ever and attracts thousands of new fans in the process while soaking up tons of mainstream media attention. Makes sense to me.

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