Mayweather, 49-0 is the clear favourite, as he should be, but McGregor, 0-0 (21-3 MMA record) isn’t to be underestimated.
Despite this being his boxing debut, McGregor is still a combat sports megastar and has helped propel the UFC to new heights and could cause the biggest upset in boxing history if he is able to beat the leader of The Money Team.
The 29-year-old is supremely confident in his ability to get the result he wants, whether it be inside the octagon or as he makes his first professional step into the boxing ring.
As the old adage goes, someone’s ‘O’ has got to go.
A sporting spectacle
The fight is happening whether people want it to or not. It’s quite simply a once in a lifetime, sideshow attraction fight that has captured the interest and attention of the watching media and fans, whether they’re hardcore boxing or MMA fans or the casual fan who has been drawn to all of this.
It’s going to be the biggest boxing gate in history, surpassing Mayweather’s previous record when he faced off against Manny Pacquiao in May 2015. It is also surely going to do more pay-per-view buys than the 2015 bout which drew 4.4 million buys across the globe.
Boxing’s GOAT vs a debutant
It’s far too easy to portray this fight as a simple bout for Mayweather because he is in the conversation for the greatest Boxer of all time and McGregor has been labeled as quite simply an opportunist who is looking to use his star power and confidence to get the biggest payday of his career.
It’s could prove difficult for the Irishman to translate his skills from the Mixed Martial Arts world into the boxing area.
McGregor isn’t going to drop his hands and consistently protect the body as he does in the UFC because he’s not going to be defending against kicks and takedowns, only punches.
The 29-year-old is one of the best attacking fighters in the UFC as he stays upright, works the inside and stays just out of his opponents punching range. However, inside the Octagon, he is able to use kicks and takedown feints to create angles and opportunities to land his lethal strikes.
Much has been made of his footwork, ability to create angles and the potential of what will happen if he is able to land his deadly left hook on Mayweather’s chin but he’s going to face the toughest test of his career on Saturday night.
Mayweather is possibly the best defensive boxer of all time and will make it close to impossible for the Notorious One to land punches. ‘Money’ has made noise not looking to ‘box’ for 12 rounds in the sense that he’ll just jab and move as he usually does, but that he wants an entertaining fight for the fans.
If Mayweather walks to McGregor like an attacking fighter, then McGregor will have his chances to land. The 40-year-old has rarely been the aggressor in his fights, more so the counter puncher that has made his career on.
He shouldn’t try and give the Irishman a chance to play to his strengths as he may pay for it, with the greatest price any boxer can pay in the ring, the end of his undefeated record and career.
Key to Victory
Don’t fix what isn’t broken. Jab and move for as long as possible, look for a decision rather than a stoppage to appease the crowd at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and those watching around the world on Showtime.
Look for an early finish. The Irishman’s best and most likely chance at winning is an early finish. Nobody is predicting the fight to go the distance or even get into the latter stages. McGregor has may have completed 12 rounds during sparring but it’s a different animal altogether once the real thing starts.