The highly anticipated fight on Aug. 26th pitted two fighting legends against each other in the ring: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor
Mayweather, ranked as the best boxer, pound for pound, of the last 25 years, was undefeated during his career, winning fifteen world titles and the lineal championship — taking the belt away from an existing champion — in four different weight classes.
Mayweather’s opponent, McGregor, is considered one of the best MMA fighters in the world. He became the first UFC fighter to ever hold the featherweight and lightweight titles simultaneously.
Prior to the fight, both Mayweather and McGregor had a considerable amount of animosity towards each other, their initial confrontation over a racial comment, with McGregor saying he would fight Mayweather if the chance arose.
However, many fans never believed the fight would actually happen, as McGregor is a UFC fighter and Mayweather is a boxer.
When the fight was announced in June, the fighting world was thrown into a frenzy, with fans constantly debating who would emerge victorious.
By early August, both fighters were making claims on when they would take the other out.
McGregor took control of the earlier of the twelve rounds. With his longer reach, he kept Mayweather at bay with well placed jabs and acted well offensively with his counter-punches.
Notably, McGregor was able to fight in a switch-hitter style, transitioning from an orthodox stance to southpaw quite fluidly, as he knew Mayweather found it harder to fight against southpaws– boxers who fight leading with their left hand.
Mayweather remained less active, landing very few punches in the early rounds. However, by round six, it was clear that he was beginning to turn the tide.
Mayweather typically fought in an out-boxer style during his career, meaning that he would try an stay defensive and strike during opportune times.
Although he remained defensive during the earlier rounds, Mayweather began to fight more offensively as the rounds continued, which surprised many spectators.
By round seven, McGregor was looking fatigued, Mayweather’s well-placed punches wearing him down.
Finally, in round ten, Mayweather landed an impressive combination, sending McGregor staggering into the ropes. The referee stopped the fight at one minute and five seconds of the tenth round.
Fans of both fighters have debated whether or not the fight was fair. Both fighters had advantages and disadvantages, though Mayweather was able to capitalize on McGregor’s disadvantages more.
McGregor had a weight and height advantage over Mayweather, not to mention being eleven years younger. However, this was McGregor’s first ever pro boxing match, while Mayweather’s 20 years of experience obviously put him ahead. McGregor’s stamina was put to the test during the fight, as MMA is traditionally only five rounds, while boxing is twelve.
Despite their hostility preceding the fight, both fighters exchanged mutual respect after their bout, displaying goodwill towards each other, both impressed with the other’s fighting capabilities.
“I didn’t anticipate that. Three game changes in the fight. That’s what a true champion does. Much respect,” McGregor said. “You came with it, you know what I mean. I’ve got to give respect to that.”
Mayweather gave similar praise during the post-fight conference.
“That was my last fight. Tonight I chose the right dance partner. Conor you were a great dance partner tonight,” Mayweather said. “Conor McGregor, you are one hell of a champion.”
Whether they are a fan of McGregor or Mayweather, no one can deny that both fighters exceeded expectations and gave a fight that will be remembered for years to come.