The Aug. 26 fight among unbeaten box Floyd Mayweather and MMA star Conor McGregor will be any. No one’s fully sure what quite, but it will be something.
It’s an interesting dichotomy in that almost everyone agrees the bout will be lopsided, boring and completely without drama. Yet no one wants to miss it.
A non-boxer boxing one of the ideal boxers of all time? How can that end any way other than an easy win for Mayweather? No one can really come up with a great answer for that.
In a investigation for that answer, The Desert Sun chatted with two debonair experts on the sub: Tuesday as MMA star Cub Swanson and legendary boxing trainer Joel Diaz joined boxing writer Andrew John to share their thoughts on the Mayweather-McGregor spectacle for a Facebook Live show.
Here are their takes in a nutshell:
Swanson: While admitting that certainly the safe bet is on Mayweather to win by verdict, he left open the window slightly that McGregor could come up with some magic strike that could change the fight. But regardless of what will perhaps happen, Cub’s not going to miss it. inasmuch as like most of us, he doesn’t want to be the guy that didn’t see the most epic jiffy in war sports history. (If that were to happen).
Diaz: He sort of fit the “grumpy old man” role, as he’s basically disgusted by the whole spectacle. He thinks the event does a disservice to the sport of boxing. It’s a money grab, plain and simple. And he doesn’t blame either guy for grabbing that money. To Diaz, the fight will certainly be boring, like all Mayweather fights, and it won’t be close. Diaz said he wouldn’t even watch the fight, before revealing later that he’ll probably be at the fight in Vegas because he’s training a fighter on the under card.
Here’s the funny thing, they’re probably both right. It will be a boring fight and a money grab for both men, but not watch it? Unlikely.
It’s hard to come up with a comparison from the world of sports. What is an event that everyone knew would not live up to the hype — especially the ridiculous traveling circus tour this one has created — but no one wanted to miss?
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This fight falls on the sports relevance spectrum somewhere between the socially important Battle of the Sexes between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, and this Sunday when Michael Phelps swims against a shark? And I think it falls closer to #PhelpsShark.
Maybe something of a curiosity like the first game of the XFL would be a better comparison. Something you’ve been hearing about for weeks, and really wanted to see what it would look like. Then you saw it. It was as uninteresting as you expected and you go on with your life.
So that’s how I’m treat this fight. Nothing more than a curiosity. A novelty act, but one I’ll be interested to see. And if there can be pressure on someone in this matchup, it’s definitely all on Mayweather.
Like everyone, I also don’t believe that McGregor has a prayer, but maybe his lack of basic boxing expertise and strategy is his only hope. Like a chess master being thrown off by a novice making a move so unorthodox it rattles them.
But as Diaz said, this is a man who has never boxed for real in a ring before, and he’s onset against one of the best of all time. Yikes.
So absolutely no hope for McGregor, not even a puncher’s luck ?
When squeezed, Diaz did admit that technically McGregor could beat Mayweather: “There’s always a chance, I mean Conor does have two hands.”