By John Limato || Contributing Writer
The dust has now settled since Floyd Mayweather knocked out UFC champion Conor McGregor in the tenth round at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Conor McGregor outlasted most expectations, but could not make good on his guarantee of victory. Referee Robert Byrd stopped the fight after noticing McGregor was in danger after a flurry of Mayweather combinations on top of McGregor’s already wobbly legs.This fight was billed to be the fight of the century. McGregor is among the best to have boxed in the UFC. A boxer of Floyd “Money” Mayweather’s skill level had also never fought an MMA fighter under standard boxing rules. However, Muhammad Ali had fought Antonio Inoki in an odd boxing-wrestling hybrid match in 1977.
Instantly after the fight ended, social media entered into a frenzy. I found myself in awe of the main fight, pre-fight hype, and under cards, as it was one of the most entertaining spectacles of sport I have ever seen. I was not amazed because it was one of the greatest fights ever, but rather because it exceeded the expectations I had going into the event. Previous Mayweather fights such as Mayweather vs. Pacquiao left me searching for more and wondering if my time and money were worth the fight I had seen. No one will mistake Mayweather McGregor for the “rumble in the jungle” but it certainly was worth the price of admission. On the other end of the spectrum, there were those who believed that Mayweather “let” McGregor win the first few rounds to not embarrass the inexperienced McGregor and that this was all a scam cooked up by the two champions. Regardless of what happened behind closed doors, I am a firm believer that Mayweather vs. McGregor was good for boxing as it revitalized a slipping fan base and displayed how boxing can still be entertaining. Mayweather vs. McGregor also helped an already growing UFC fan base as, even after being defeated, UFC superstar McGregor was the star of the show. As a young adult, I have never seen my peers as well as myself as interested in and satisfied by a fight, be it UFC or boxing.
Mayweather claims he will walk into the sunset and retire with an undefeated 50-0 career record. Meanwhile what is next for Conor McGregor is up in the air in the moment. Will he return to the octagon and finish the would-be trilogy of Diaz vs. McGregor? Many fans have been clamoring for the rubber match in what has been an even split up to this point. McGregor could also stay in the ring and potentially fight Paulie Malignaggi, a former welterweight champion who formed a rivalry with Mcgregor after McGregor’s camp released images of Malignaggi on the canvas after allegedly being knocked down by McGregor. Ethnicity could also be a headline for this potential matchup as Irish-Americans and Italian-Americans make up a large population of America, with both nations having rich fighting histories. Fighters such as Rocky Marciano, Jake LaMotta, and James “The Cinderella Man” Braddock have made their heritage known in the ring. Regardless, it is evident that McGregor’s next fight will garner much interest thanks to this past bout as well as, McGregor’s growing brand Mayweather vs. McGregor may have been a spectacle that will never be seen again. However, its lasting impression will be one that conjures emotions of excitement, as its rare nature and larger-than-life entertainment should be cherished.
First-year John Limato is a contributing writer. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.