McGregor and Malignaggi confront each other outside the McGregor-Mayweather press conference. Malignaggi:
Did you bring your balls, Conor?
I saw him, and I said, ‘What are you afraid of a faceoff today?’ He didn’t say anything, and the big ghouls he surrounds himself with started pushing and shoving, and then it was a pushing and shoving contest. … He can’t walk around the place without being surrounded by these donkeys, [but] look, he’s in the ring on his own. I’m already the true king of fighting. I’ll be the king of boxing now, also.
McGregor says that fatherhood has made him more ruthless.
Fatherhood is such an amazing thing, because it made me just realise what’s important. If anything, I feel the pressure is off my shoulders even more so. It’s been beautiful and an eye-opening experience. As a fighter [I’m] a little more ruthless maybe, a little bit more certain and a little bit more dangerous — if I am being honest — because there is another one I am fighting for.
Ferguson says he took the fight against Kevin Lee because he felt that winning an interim title would force the hand of the lightweight champ Conor McGregor and put him into the pole position to fight for the undisputed belt when the Irishman returns from his foray into the world of boxing after August 26th.
As far as what Conor is at, if he does ‘MayMac’ and he wins or loses it doesn’t matter, he’s going to have to defend his belt against the person that has the interim title. It’s defend or vacate. I mean that’s what makes sense to me because that’s the way the rules have always went. You have to fight the one who has the title, to unify the titles. If I’m going to have an interim title, I want to fight Conor…If he wants the trilogy with Nate he has to drop the belt. He can’t hold onto the belt and do all of that other stuff. He did it for a whole entire year, you had your kid, that’s great, now let’s fight…I’ve moved on from calling him ‘McNuggets’ because his game has gotten a little bit better. His boxing has gotten better. When he throws punches he has learned to block his face a little bit better. He’s got his sh*t together as far as his hands.
Wahlberg and Diddy revisit the bet they made for Mayweather-Pacquiao (Wahlberg lost $250K, which he donated to charity). This time, Wahlberg is placing his bet on McGregor, while Diddy is going once again for Mayweather.
Wahlberg: Who you got?
Diddy: Money Mayweather baby!
Wahlberg: You see the shamrock?
Diddy: You know this is Money Team all the way.
Diddy & Mark Wahlberg: The Bet – Part Two | Mayweather vs. McGregor | Aug. 26 on SHOWTIME PPV
Showtime announces it has signed Lovato to sing the U.S. National Anthem ahead of the McGregor-Mayweather fight. Lovato is a regular at UFC fights, and trains in MMA at Jay Glazer’s gym in Los Angeles.
Boxing champion Tony Bellew writes that McGregor will need multiple effective techniques to beat Mayweather.
The only way I can see Conor McGregor causing trouble is if he jumps on Floyd Mayweather, non-stop punching. That is the only slither of a case I can make for a McGregor win. But, how long could he keep doing that before he gets countered? Getting close in the boxing ring and octagon is completely different. When you get close in the octagon you’re allowed to hit and hold…Looking at the Paulie Malignaggi clips, it looks like McGregor was using a lot of slaps and uppercuts on the inside – that’s not going to work. Mayweather will tuck up and come back fast and vicious. A counter left hook would smash into McGregor’s temple…And on that Malignaggi ‘knockdown’ – it doesn’t matter anyway. That’s sparring…The gym does not mean anything. It gets you ready for when you’re under the lights, that’s it…His punch looked good, straight with some power. But listen, Mayweather is the best ever and McGregor was found out against Nate Diaz in stand-up…Diaz did not stop McGregor on the floor. Yeah, he choked him out, but he got him to the floor by consistently punching him in the face…Are you trying to tell me Conor McGregor hits harder than Alvarez, than Shane Mosley, than De la Hoya, than Hatton – the list is endless. There’s not a chance in hell that McGregor needs just one punch.
UFC releases the first episode of McGregor vs Mayweather Embedded, its behind-the-scenes video blog. McGregor continues to perfect his skills in the gym, as his coaches talk glove size and Game of Thrones. Mayweather and his team practice their swings at Topgolf.
Mayweather vs McGregor Embedded: Vlog Series – Episode 1
McGregor is ready ‘to shock the world’ says his striking coach Roddy. Roddy says McGregor has no doubt in his belief that he can create one of the greatest upsets of all time in a boxing ring.
I think there will be a little bit of feeling out most definitely when the bell rings. I’ve been with Conor many, many years now and we have brought in everybody over the years. Check out this guy, Conor. World class Thai boxer. Never been touched by anybody. Conor goes in, he throws a few shots, figures the guy out, he reads the patterns and then knows exactly what they are going to do. He knows before they know. Then he puts the shots in that apply and they fall over…Ok, Conor, we’ve got this tae kwon do guy. He moves a totally different way. He does this and does that. He goes in, moves around with him, figures him out, puts the shots in that apply, guy falls over…We’ve done this with amateur boxers, professional boxers. Every single person that has walked in the gym and I’ve watched him spar, it takes him a minute or two. It depends how good they are. But it takes no more than a minute for him to figure them out and put the shots in that apply. When you see this happen over and over again, you can’t doubt him.
In an interview with The Mac Life, Kavanagh says McGregor is ready
He has gone at a complete new level, now that he’s been able to focus on the hand techniques in MMA, what we call boxing…I feel this is a very interesting fight, in terms of both camps have such high expectations. A lot of times you go to an MMA fight and you expect to win, but there’s a possibility of losing. [Mayweather’s team] don’t expect Conor to land a punch. They don’t expect to win, they expect it to be an absolute walk in the park…and I can honestly say, I don’t expect this to be the hardest fight of all time for Conor. I expect him to go in there and completely dominate. So one of us is living in a delusion..I really find it hard to imagine anything else other than Conor really putting on a clinic, and really destroying him.
John Kavanagh exclusive interview — "I expect Conor to go in there and completely dominate"
Lobov says Nurmagomedov is only popular in Russia because of McGregor.
It would be very hard to say who would be the bigger draw in Russia between Khabib and Conor. I honestly feel that Khabib is as big as he is in Russia because of Conor McGregor. A lot of people in Russian aren’t happy with how Khabib has been behaving with all of his pullouts. This isn’t a very manly thing to do, not showing up for a fight. In Russia, the people have been brought up tough. It used to be the Soviet Union. The thing everybody thinks of when they think about Russia is how tough the people are. When they see a fighter continuously pulling out, that’s something that they really don’t like. Then they look at a guy like Conor who always shows up and does what he says he’s going to do. That really resonates with the Russian public.
Mayweather Senior says that they will sue McGregor if he ‘fights dirty’.
It’s gonna stop right there…And guess what? Then we’re gonna throw a big suit at him…There’s enough people around here suing everybody for nothing, and this is something that you can be screwed for. Like I said many times before, Floyd is better. But I’m saying here now, he’s training good enough for a guy like this. Conor, first of all, showed the whole world his egg, and I think you know what I’m talking about…And guess what, it ain’t nothing.
Floyd Mayweather Sr. says they will sue Conor McGregor if he fights dirty | THE HERD
McGregor surprises Lee Hammond, an up-and-coming amateur fighter, and Sergey Pikulskiy, a wrestling coach, who are both members of McGregor’s Straight Blast Gym in Dublin, with a VIP trip to Las Vegas to watch the Mayweather fight. The two of them thought they were at the gym to record ‘good luck’ messages for McGregor with his new sponsor, Betsafe, but once they had been filmed giving their support, they were shown a clip which contained a message from McGregor to them. ‘Notorious Airways’ has been created by Conor McGregor and Betsafe, as a program to fly a small selection of lucky attendees to the fight.
Congratulations to Lee Hammond and Sergey Pikulskiy of Straight Blast Gym – you get to fly on my personal private jet to Las Vegas to witness my fight on August 26th. Congratulations boys and I will see you there.
Showtime releases the fourth episode of All Access, its behind-the-scenes series about the build up to the McGregor-Mayweather fight. Dana White:
From the first day I met him I knew he’d be a big star. I call him ‘The Unicorn’. He’s very, very smart. His comedic timing is perfect. He’s a very likable guy. There’s no persona with Conor McGregor. He is who he is. I asked his girlfriend one time, ‘Is he like this 24/7?’ and she said, ‘Y’know Dana, sometimes I wake up and he’s shadow boxing in his underwear at three in the morning. That’s who he is.’…If Conor McGregor wins this fight, and he knocks out Floyd Mayweather, it will be the greatest upset in the history of sports. It is literally all anyone will talk about for a year…He has the ability to make you believe.
Former UFC middleweight champion, Chris Weidman, predicts that McGregor will win his fight against Mayweather, but that there will be further rematches.
Yeah, I mean I think I have [McGregor] winning now. I think he’s gonna win. That’s my last prediction. Third-round knockout. It’s just a gut feeling, just I’m feeling it. I think it’s gonna happen and then they’re going to have a second fight, Mayweather’s gonna win that and then next thing you know they got a Conor verses Floyd trilogy, and everybody’s spent 300 bucks, which means 500 million for each of them.
Submission Radio #135 Chris Weidman, Kenny Florian, Stipe Miocic, Duane & Hunter
TMZ reports that a long list of celebrities will attend the McGregor-Mayweather fight on August 26, including Angelina Jolie, Drake, Elon Musk, Diddy, Mark Wahlberg, Denzel Washington, Charlize Theron, LL Cool J, Jamie Foxx, LeBron James, Bob Kraft, Rick Ross, Adam Levine, Michael Bay, Avicii, and Jeff Beacher. Others have yet to announce their attendance.
Diaz talks about boxers who are criticizing McGregor.
And now all the boxers are criticizing Conor, and Conor won’t get embarrassed, but it’s a real arrogant thing to say…Sparring with some clown from wherever…I’ll beat that guy’s ass too…That guy was on the internet, talking sh-t about him the other day? What kind of sparring partner have you got? I’d shove that guy in the gym and beat his ass if I was Conor…I’d box him in the ring, whoop his ass, and then throw him down at the end…Most people in MMA can’t box. Need a lot of work. Boxers are clowns sometimes…I’m never taking the MMA fighters’over the boxers’ side, when it comes to punching…but we’re talking real fighters now you one-dimensional boxing f-cks.
Hatton, who was beaten by Mayweather in the tenth round, and believes that Joe Cortez, who was refereeing, didn’t allow him the opportunity to fight on the inside, says the decisions of the referee will be crucial in McGregor’s fight against Mayweather.
If the referee lets him have a crack. I think when I look back on it (my fight with Mayweather) I hope the referee lets Conor have a go. I’m not saying that I’d have won the [Mayweather] fight anyway if the referee had let me had a go. All you want is a fair crack of the whip. I think he must be thinking the same as me. Just let me have a fair shout and let me have a go at him. If he lets him have a fight with his strength as well, I think with Floyd at 40 years of age – we might see him dwindle a lot. If Conor can put his foot on the gas from there on in he might get a late stoppage or maybe even a points win. I think Conor will probably say I don’t mind losing the early rounds – as long as bit by bit I can sap his strength and drain him – and slow him down a bit. You’d have to say with Mayweather’s boxing ability the early part of the fight is Floyd’s but eventually if he’s given the opportunity by the referee to keep on him and keep on him, by the time it gets to round 6, 7 and 8 – then it might be Conor’s part of the fight
McGregor responds, referencing Haye’s broken-toe excuse after losing to Wladimir Klitschko in 2011:
It’s a shoulder-loosening exercise. It gets the shoulders warmed up but you’ve got to do it correctly. I saw David Haye hit pads with it but you can’t hit pads when the shoulder’s disconnected. You hit when the shoulder is disconnected and you’ll do serious damage to yourself. And David Haye is a man who has pulled out of contests with a sore baby toe so he must be careful with the way he hits pads.
Mayweather says footage of McGregor sparring Malignaggi shows the UFC lightweight champion to be “extremely dirty” in the ring.
A lot of shots were illegal. Lots of grappling and illegal punching behind the head…He had Joe Cortez in his camp but I still saw him being extremely dirty. My job is not to worry about the referee but to let the referee do his job.
Malignaggi also says the same:
His intensity is a good thing. I just don’t know if he can go without fouling. Fighting up close, I think he gets a bit confused and he ends up fouling. I think that’s where he can be most intense but fighting up close is the hardest thing in boxing to learn and I don’t think you can do that in a few months.
On his media conference call, McGregor says he still considers himself the UFC featherweight and UFC lightweight champion
I mean, how can I not consider myself the UFC featherweight world champion and the UFC lightweight world champion? The current UFC featherweight world champion is Max Holloway, a man who I dismantled, and the former was Jose Aldo — I still reign supreme over that division. And then also, the 155-pound division, I know there’s talks of an interim belt, I’d only won that belt, and literally a month later there was an interim scheduled…But it is what it is, everyone knows I am the multiple-weight world champion of the UFC’s featherweight division and lightweight division, and I look forward to going back and continuing where I left off.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission votes to allow the McGregor-Mayweather fight to take place using 8-ounce gloves — a first of its kind in boxing. McGregor believes the drop in glove size is to his advantage:
I am very pleased with the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s handling of my next bout today. Fair play was kept all the way through. Referee – Hall of famer Robert Byrd. Judges – Burt Clements. Dave Morreti and Guido Cavalerri. 8oz gloves approved, with pre and post fight analysis of the gloves on the night. This was handled very well and very fairly by the NSAC. I am very pleased and respect the commissions ruling on this. Ten days until fight time.
Mick Konstantin releasesThere’s Only One Conor McGregor, with proceeds to go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin. The track is available for download on iTunes here.
It’s all been a bit crazy really. I really love creating music people enjoy, I could never have dreamt that the song would have reached the heights it has. I couldn’t believe it. McGregor’s team rang me the following day and told me McGregor loved the song. That was amazing that he heard the song and liked it, but McGregor and his team asked if I’d like to go to the fight. It was a dream come true…The support I’ve received for this song has been immense, and I’m going to have the trip of a lifetime to see McGregor in action in Vegas. I felt I had to give something back. I have decided to donate all iTunes sales of There’s Only One Conor McGregor, until the fight to a charity Conor supports. The proceeds of the sales will go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin. “I’d love to see the hospital benefit from this and see the proceeds going to a good cause.
White says that boxing has snubbed MMA, and is now ready for a wake up call.
Here’s the reality: boxing has tried to snub this sport for a very long time. The people who think is going to be this one-sided whatever with Floyd Mayweather, don’t know Conor McGregor yet. The beautiful thing about this thing is that it’s the biggest combat sport [event] ever in the history of combat sports — now you’re going to meet Conor McGregor, motherf—s!…When he makes this upset — and it’ll be the biggest upset in the history of sports — he’s going to be the biggest athlete on the planet. It’s going to be awesome.
Dana White talks McGregor/Mayweather, Breaking Records, and Paulie Malignaggi
Malignaggi says he wants to settle his feud with McGregor in a boxing ring.
It’s picked up a ton of momentum, the bad blood is there so let’s fight. We’ll need to see how he looks against Mayweather. If he looks dog s***, no one will want to see us fight. As long as he doesn’t get the living s*** beaten out of him, I think the demand is there to make the fight…I showed up with the best intentions in camp, but at a certain point you realise that you are being used as a pawn where somebody is trying to get ahead at your expense and not through your help…f I never see him or speak to him for the rest of my life, it’s cool.
The MMA Hour: Episode 395 (w/Cormier, GSP, Malignaggi, Hardy in Studio, More)
White talks about suggestions by Malignaggi that he had edited the McGregor sparring footage to make McGregor look better.
What am I Steven Spielberg! Come on! It’s footage of the actual sparring. I was there for all 12 rounds. Paulie has said some bad things about me. I felt sorry for the guy. It was a one-way beating. A lot of people were saying Conor couldn’t box. Paulie was obviously lying about everything about the sparring match, so I released it….I got no problem releasing the full tape, the problem is that Conor doesn’t want Mayweather to see everything he’s working on…It was very one-sided. it was an absolute beating. It was the right thing for Paulie Malignaggi to leave, for his health’s sake…Conor’s going to come at [Mayweather] different than anyone he’s every faced before. It’s not going to be a boxing match, it’s going to be a fight.
Dana White "Conor McGregor gave Malignaggi a one sided beating"
I think a lot of boxing fans are looking at Conor as if he’s never, ever boxed. Even the way they’re talking seems that they’re writing him off like he never boxed. He boxed, he understands boxing. I just think his chance is going to happen within the first four rounds. And Conor can. I think you’re a fool if you don’t think Conor can put Floyd away. I think he can. I think he can land a punch and put Floyd away…I think if it goes past the fourth round and gets in the fifth, sixth, seventh where it can become a technical boxing match, I think it could look look one sided. Floyd’s the king of that, he’s the king of swimming and not getting wet. He can punch and not get hit. So I think if it goes further past five, six, seven, eight he could win by TKO. But I think before that time, that’s where Conor’s time is — in the first four rounds.
White says he believes in McGregor’s ability to beat Mayweather.
I stopped doubting Conor McGregor a long time ago. Everything he’s told me he’s going to do, he’s done, so if he says he’ll beat Floyd Mayweather inside four rounds, he will. I don’t think Conor underestimates him, he obviously respects him but you’ve got to remember – Floyd is 41 years old and Conor McGregor is 28 years old. He’s the bigger, stronger fighter. People aren’t giving him a chance and that’s just crazy. This is going to be a fight, and anything can happen in a fight…[8 ounce gloves] definitely benefits Conor. First of all, Floyd isn’t a big puncher, he’s not a knockout puncher. His whole game is defence, using the gloves to defend himself and smaller gloves means Conor will have more places to hit. We’ve always wanted to have smaller gloves, they didn’t want it and now all of a sudden Floyd has decided that he wants smaller gloves. So now we have a hearing with the state commission this week and hopefully that will happen. Conor isn’t concerned about Floyd’s punching power at all.
Collider Productions releases the trailer for the documentary, The McGregor Effect, which will be released on August 20. It includes narrations from fans who have been inspired by McGregor, such as Thomas Nolan, who was inspired to lose a huge amount of weight and become a personal trainer.
It’s a few different backgrounds my story being one. Another is the guys who done the mural in the gym of him smacking Mayweather, another one is an Irish female world kickboxing champion. [It’s about] how he’s inspired people in not only sports, but all aspects of life, basically giving hope to a country that was becoming a bunch of nagging negative Nancys.
McGregor rewards Mick Konstantin, the fan who wrote a song about the fighter’s build up to his fight with Mayweather.
It was one hell of a song. It’s a very catchy song. We actually reached out to the guy…I had my people reach out to him and we’re booking him a flight, him plus one. We’re going to bring him over to the fight and get him tickets and put him up in a hotel and I’m going to meet him maybe after the fight. It’s one hell of a song…I’m going to bring him in as a thank you for the support. What a song, it’s the journey in music form…Myself and my team, we enjoyed it very much, so we’re going to fly him out.
Cannot even begin to thank himself and all his crew enough. They really are legends, and will never forget this gesture. Really is the stuff of dreams.
The song will also be released as a single and is expected to be available for download and streaming soon.
McGregor says the switch to lighter gloves is to his advantage.
It’s backfired on him, I believe…I already agreed to it, but I put it in front of the public, and it must have dented his ego. That’s it. He tried to go ‘let’s do the eight ounces’. Now we’re going to do the eight ounces. Great, I usually fight in four so I don’t give a f***. I accepted these stipulations. No Mexican [gloves], no horsehair, no 10 ounce, all that. Eight ounce great. He’ll be asleep inside two [rounds]…[10 ounce in four]…I’m just trying to be humble. He’s gonna be down in the first. The only reason he may survive the first is because has ten seconds, and I can’t pounce in a mixed martial arts bout.
You ain’t never seen me troubled by no small man like that…If he comes in any heavier [than 150] he’s not going to be in peak physical condition. If he comes in at 150, he’s in peak physical condition, but he’s gonna be 150 pounds. I’m going to be 170 plus on the night. If I don’t know what else to say…It’s over before it even begins. Trust me on that.
I’m not really too much of a fan of either of those. I think Canelo’s a little but stuck, a little bit flat on his feet. When I watch footage of him I just see him getting peppered — he has no feet under him…Golovkin I think came into camp, for this preparation, badly out of shape. I’m looking at him badly out of shape up in Big Bear and I just see a drained individual. So, although they’re supposedly up there as well, I don’t really think they are.
Conor McGregor not a fan of Canelo or Golovkin, says "Canelo is flat footed & Golovkin out of shape"
Lobov, McGregor’s long-time training partner and fellow UFC fighter, says Malignaggi wasn’t used to not being the centre of attention.
In boxing they very rarely train in camps. You very rarely see two champions train together. It’s always centered around one guy – he is the star and then everyone else is there to support him. Paulie just was not used to not being that star, he just wasn’t able to deal with it.
On the ‘pushdown’:
Sorry that there was no good pictures of Paulie, because he didn’t land anything in sparring! So, what can we do?
On McGregor being cheap with sparring partners:
They had their own house. A normal house, they had a car, they had their meals sorted. Three meals a day sorted from a restaurant. You know, not just where they had to cook themselves. No, they had restaurant meals delivered to them, every day, three times a day. And they were getting paid! I mean, what else can you ask for?
ARTEM LOBOV "PAULIE DIDNT LAND ANYTHING IN SPARRING! TRUE FLOYD KNOWS EVERYTHING BUT KNOWS NOTHING!"
McGregor and Mayweather appear in the third Episode of Showtime’s All Access. McGregor:
I could snap him down, latch up his neck and sleep him in seconds. So, I don’t give a fuck about him, I don’t hold respect for him, I will not show him respect in the fight. I don’t think he lasts four rounds, that’s being honest. Not only do I think I will beat him, I think I will also make it look easy.
At his Media Scrum, McGregor talks about his sparing session with Malignaggi.
He was looking for an exit. The spars were not good for him. He took a lot of head trauma. Straight after it we were worried. The sparring partners were actually telling us when he was dropped back at the home that he was stumbling out of the car after the 12-rounder…He was flattened against the ropes; multiple times the ropes kept him on his feet. We were worried about him. We thought the worst was about to happen. He was certainly badly concussed. And then he just got out of there and went running…He showed (up), he tried his best, it didn’t go his way. He got his ass whooped, he got his pride dented, and then he wanted a way out. What better way for a guy like him to exit under a load of questions…He was flattened. What can I say? He got his ass whooped. But I like the guy. He’s kind of like a lovable mouthpiece.
In response to accusations from Mayweather that McGregor’s team called his team ‘monkeys’:
I just didn’t like when he called us monkeys. I think that was totally disrespect. He called us monkeys. I didn’t like it. It didn’t push a button to make me jump out of my character and go crazy, but I didn’t like it.
He knows there’s no racism from me; his father knows, [his manager] Leonard Ellerbe knows, ask these people. He says I labelled him a monkey, I never once labelled him or any other African American a monkey, and it f****** annoys me he’s bringing this stuff up…If I was to label him after any animal it would be a rat or a weasel, that’s a rat and a weasel move trying to manipulate someone’s words and create something that isn’t even there. That’s such a sensitive subject. He’s a man who beats his wife in front of his kid. He is the dirt of the dirt so to even bring that up and engage in that, that shows me his true colours.
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