By Andreas Hale
In a recent interview with ESPN, Floyd Mayweather appeared to go an uncharacteristic route and concede that Conor McGregor was stepping into the ring on August 26 with several physical advantages that could spell trouble for the 49-0 boxer in Las Vegas. Those of us with any knowledge of the boxing game know better than that considering that age, size and strength have never been attributes that stopped Mayweather from having his hand raised in victory.
Was he trying to sell the fight? Maybe so, but during Mayweather’s media day at the Mayweather Boxing Club, both he and Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe said that they were doing nothing of the sort.
“I said that on paper everything leans toward Conor McGregor but I never said that he was going to beat me,” Mayweather said to a room full of media at the Mayweather Boxing Club. “We know he’s taller, has a longer reach and youth is on his side. I guess everyone says power is also on his side but experience and IQ are on my side. I never said that I feel like I’m going to lose. I’m not going to get into anything where I think I’m going to lose.”
Ellerbe said that Mayweather was simply pointing out the obvious.
“He hasn’t done any (training) in the past two years,” Ellerbe said. “He hasn’t done anything but travel around the world on his jet and live this incredible life. He’s saying those things because they are true. He is older and he has slowed down. He’s not the same fighter he was two years ago.”
But Ellerbe made it very clear that even though Mayweather isn’t what he once was, he’d still be good enough to beat the Irishman. He just didn’t want to lie to the public and suggest that age wouldn’t be a factor in his preparation.
“He was perfectly fine riding around on his jet with his friends and family because he was done with boxing,” Ellerbe noted. “But this incredible opportunity came up and here we are.”