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Past his prime? Striking coach says Conor McGregor beats any version of Floyd Mayweather

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Filed under: News, UFC

Conor McGregor’s striking coach has the utmost faith in his student’s ability to shock the world on Aug. 26, and it doesn’t matter if Floyd Mayweather is still in his prime or beyond it.

Mayweather (49-0 boxing) will end a two-year retirement later this month when he meets McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) in the pay-per-view headliner at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. At 40, the undefeated former multi-weight champion has admitted he’s not what he once was but still believes he’s good enough to handily defeat “The Notorious.”

McGregor’s coach, Owen Roddy, is assertive in the team-wide prediction of an early knockout win, but he said it has nothing to do with the version of Mayweather that will show up on fight night. Roddy said the matchup is tailor-made for McGregor, and regardless of whether it’s a peak Mayweather or not, the expectations are the same.

“He’s one of the best to ever do it, but it doesn’t matter what Floyd comes,” Roddy told MMAjunkie. “The Floyd from 10 years ago or the Floyd today, it doesn’t matter. Conor will still do the same thing to either one of them. Conor just brings too much to the table.

“Every fight camp Conor improves so much. We’re in a boxing camp now, but it’s the same old story. Day by day he improves so much, he becomes twice the competitor he was the day before. It’s always an enjoyable process to watch him and watch him develop.”

With the fight two weeks away, most of the hard work in training camp has been done. Roddy and the rest of the team have strategized and refined a gameplan, but still new information can be gained as the days wind down.

Mayweather’s open workout earlier this week was somewhat serviceable, Roddy said. McGregor put in 12 rounds of bag work during his Friday workout, but Mayweather’s was far more reserved. Roddy said that’s somewhat telling.

“For me, honestly, I thought it was a little bit messy,” Roddy said of Mayweather’s display. “He didn’t do much. He hit a bag a couple times and talked. He did a couple of pushups and talked. It wasn’t very structured or anything like that. It’s similar to what he’s done every other time. At the end of the day, we’ve already watched everything we need to watch on Floyd. We watched hundreds of hours of tape, and we’ve got what we needed.”

Although McGregor has already reached, by most measures, unthinkable heights during his combat sports career (such as becoming the first to simultaneously hold two UFC titles), pulling off a win against Mayweather would be his crowning achievement. Roddy believes that high will only be temporary, though, because he expects McGregor’s next career move to supersede everything he’s done to this point.

“The exciting thing is after Conor does what he does: What is the next adventure? I don’t know, is the answer,” Roddy said. “I don’t know what he’s going to do next. It could be mixed martial arts. It could be boxing. It could be anything. But it’ll be exciting and it’ll be more exciting than the last thing, most definitely.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare down one another during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor gestures toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor speaks as Floyd Mayweather reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather shadow boxes during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor gestures toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather holds up a check while speaking during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor reacts toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face as UFC president Dana White keeps them separated following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Fans of Conor McGregor cheer during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Fans of Conor McGregor hold up a sign predicting the defeat of Floyd Mayweather (not pictured) during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Rap artist Drake performs before Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor appear during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor dances as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor point and stare down each other during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down as UFC president Dana White intervenes during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor taunts Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor draws a reaction from the crowd as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor taunts Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor sits near UFC president Dana White during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather (right) draws a reaction from Conor McGregor as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather taunts Conor McGregor as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather poses with an Irish flag during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor reacts as he takes cash from a money bag brought onto the stage by Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather taunts Conor McGregor while wearing an Irish flag and Conor McGregor mocks Floyd Mayweather with his money bag during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor throws the Irish flag at Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor throws an Irish flag at Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor walks the runway during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather enters Barclay Canter during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather throws money at Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather throws money at Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor enters the ring during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Dana White steps in as Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts to Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor addresses the crowd during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather shouts at Conor McGregor during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts to Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Dana White (hidden) separates Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather astray face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/si9zxJPMHPwke8HK2qGqF9/265319", customAnalytics: true, title: "Mayweather-McGregor world tour madness", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: News, UFC

Gregor Gillespie vs. Jason Gonzalez added to UFC Fight Night 116 in Pittsburgh

A lightweight contest is the newest addition to the UFC’s return to Pennsylvania, with Gregor Gillespie (9-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) facing Jason Gonzalez (11-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC).

UFC officials recently confirmed the matchup following an initial report from the Pittsburgh’s Post-Gazette.com.

Featuring a middleweight main event between former UFC champ Luke Rockhold and former dual-division WSOF title holder David Branch, UFC Fight Night 116 takes place Sept. 16 at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh. The night’s main card airs on FS1, though the full bout order has yet to be released.

Fighting professionally since 2014, Gillespie is undefeated through the first nine fights of his career, including seven wins by stoppage. Included in that run are two wins under the UFC banner, including a 21-second stoppage of Andrew Holbrook at April’s UFC 210 event, as well a debut victory in UFC Fight Night 95 decision result over Glaico Franca in September 2016.

Meanwhile, Gonzalez saw a six-fight winning streak snapped in his UFC debut, suffering a debut loss to Drew Dober at this past September’s UFC 203 event. However, Gonzalez rebounded with a first-round submission win over J.C. Cottrell at January’s UFC on FOX 23 event.

With the addition to the card, UFC Fight Night 116 now includes:

  • Luke Rockhold vs. David Branch
  • Thiago Alves vs. Mike Perry
  • Hector Lombard vs. Anthony Smith
  • Anthony Hamilton vs. Daniel Spitz
  • Uriah Hall vs. Krzysztof Jotko
  • Sergio Moraes vs. Kamaru Usman
  • Justin Ledet vs. Dmitriy Sosnovskiy
  • Gilbert Burns vs. Jason Saggo
  • Gregor Gillespie vs. Jason Gonzalez

For more on UFC Fight Night 116, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.


Filed under: News, UFC

Artem Lobov discusses Conor McGregor's 'absolutely perfect' training camp for Mayweather

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Filed under: News, UFC

Artem Lobov struggles to see any flaws in Conor McGregor’s preparation for his boxing match with Floyd Mayweather later this month.

Lobov (13-13-1 MMA, 2-3 UFC), who is a close friend and training partner of “The Notorious,” has been by McGregor’s (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) side for the majority of his career. They’ve prepared for big fights together, and in that time, Lobov has seen all the highs and lows. He pegged preparation for Mayweather (49-0 boxing) as the best he’s been involved with.

“Everything is absolutely perfect from his meal plans, diet, his training, his sparring – everything, literally,” Lobov told MMAjunkie. “No stone has been left unturned, and everything has gone very smooth. So, Aug. 26, there’s going to be a very scary animal in that ring with Floyd.”

Lobov said one of the keys to a successful training camp has been confidence in approach. Although McGregor is considered by most to be a massive underdog against Mayweather, the self-belief stemming from McGregor and everyone around him makes the situation particularly interesting.

McGregor has failed to reveal a single instance of doubt about his ability to win, and Lobov said that mindset is one of the Irishman’s most dangerous weapons.

“He always was a confident man, but when you capture two UFC world titles, something that hasn’t been accomplished before, that takes your confidence to the next level,” Lobov said. “Now you have real proof of what you believe in is in fact the truth. So of course his confidence is at an all-time high. His preparation, as well.”

Whether McGregor’s confidence will carry him to a victory over a more experienced, accomplished foe in Mayweather will only be determined on fight night. However, the official prediction coming from McGregor is that he will win by knockout in four rounds or less. It’s a bold prediction against Mayweather, who has never been beaten, much less stopped, but given McGregor’s fight outcome history, Lobov doesn’t view the assessment as unrealistic.

“Look at Conor’s fights: There’s not many decisions there,” Lobov said. “He’s been to a decision twice (in the UFC). Once with no leg, no ACL (against Max Holloway), and then another time (in the Nate Diaz rematch). Of course we’re going to knock out, we’re expecting a knockout. In a boxing fight, he’s going to have nowhere to hide, Mayweather. Conor will find him and catch him.”

To hear more from Lobov, check out the video above.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare down one another during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor gestures toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor speaks as Floyd Mayweather reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather shadow boxes during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor gestures toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather holds up a check while speaking during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Conor McGregor reacts toward Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face as UFC president Dana White keeps them separated following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports July 11, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor meet face to face following the world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Fans of Conor McGregor cheer during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Fans of Conor McGregor hold up a sign predicting the defeat of Floyd Mayweather (not pictured) during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Rap artist Drake performs before Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor appear during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor dances as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor point and stare down each other during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down as UFC president Dana White intervenes during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor taunts Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor draws a reaction from the crowd as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor taunts Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor sits near UFC president Dana White during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather (right) draws a reaction from Conor McGregor as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather taunts Conor McGregor as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather poses with an Irish flag during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor reacts as he takes cash from a money bag brought onto the stage by Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather taunts Conor McGregor while wearing an Irish flag and Conor McGregor mocks Floyd Mayweather with his money bag during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor throws the Irish flag at Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Conor McGregor throws an Irish flag at Floyd Mayweather as he speaks during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 12, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stare each other down during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Budweiser Stage. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor walks the runway during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather enters Barclay Canter during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather throws money at Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather throws money at Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 13, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor enters the ring during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Dana White steps in as Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts to Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor addresses the crowd during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather shouts at Conor McGregor during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor reacts to Floyd Mayweather during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Floyd Mayweather address the crowd during the press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports Jul 14, 2017; London, United Kingdom; Dana White (hidden) separates Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather astray face off during a world tour press conference to promote the upcoming Mayweather vs McGregor boxing fight at SSE Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/si9zxJPMHPwke8HK2qGqF9/265309", customAnalytics: true, title: "Mayweather-McGregor world tour madness", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: News, UFC

CES MMA 45 video highlights: Mouthpiece not required for victory

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539479319001
Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, Videos

Sure, the MMA world is fixated on The Money Fight right now, but the grind continues for fighters hoping to break through to the next level.

On Friday, AXS TV broadcasted CES MMA 45 from Twin River Casino in Lincoln, R.I. The night’s main card featured five finishes in six bouts, including a pair of championship tilts.

Check out highlights of all the action, including a few nifty finishes, as well as an epic comeback that saw Richie Santiago (5-0) nearly finished on the feet before bouncing back to secure an impressive submission win.

For additional coverage of CES MMA 45, check out the MMA Events section of the site.


Filed under: AXS TV Fights, News, Videos

UFC's Stefan Struve: A quick Brock Lesnar return to fight Jon Jones 'would be the worst message'

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

The idea of a Jon Jones-Brock Lesnar superfight excites many MMA fans. UFC heavyweight Stefan Struve, however, has concerns.

Jones  (23-1 MMA, 17-1 UFC) and Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) started going back and forth during UFC 214 fight week, and the possibility of a future battle increased when Jones called out Lesnar following his knockout victory over Daniel Cormier to reclaim the light heavyweight title. That prompted a warning from Lesnar.

The problem, of course, is that not only is Lesnar currently retired (and employed by WWE), he still has six months left to serve on a suspension from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency stemming from multiple failed drug tests around the time of last year’s UFC 200. When Lesnar came out of retirement to face Mark Hunt at the July 2016 event, the UFC gave Lesnar a four-month exemption from USADA testing so he could take the fight right away.

RelatedJon Jones recognizes Brock Lesnar could be using him for leverage in WWE contract negotiations

If the UFC were to try that again and allow Lesnar to jump right back into a superfight and earn a big payday, Struve (28-8 MMA, 12-6 UFC) feels strongly about the detrimental message it sends.

“They cannot do that. That’s impossible,” Struve told Submission Radio. “That would be the worst message the UFC could ever send out. So if he fights again, he should go through six months of testing, I believe, before he fights again. I think that’s the rule right now. So if he comes back, and they let him go through those six months of testing, then I’m curious to see how he steps in the cage.”

Struve, who headlines next month’s FS1-televised UFC Fight Night 115 against Alexander Volkov, expects Jones would win against a clean or dirty Lesnar regardless.

RelatedStefan Struve doesn't care about UFC heavyweight rankings: 'I'm where I belong'

“I think Jones beats him anyway – simple as that,” Struve said. “Jones is too good of an athlete. I don’t think Lesnar gets a hold of him to take him down. Jones moves too well. I think ‘D.C.’ is a great fighter, and of course that kick was great, but before that I didn’t see the Jon Jones who we used to see as dominant as he used to be.

“So I’m curious to see if he re-finds himself and gets to be more dominant again. But I don’t think Lesnar takes him down or anything, and he’s definitely not going to win the fight on the feet.”

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, visit the UFC Rumors section of the site.


Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

What Mayweather Promotions CEO really meant when he told us 'mind your (expletive) business'

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Speaking to reporters during a media day on Thursday to promote Floyd Mayweather’s bout with Conor McGregor, Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe launched into a monologue that was part sales pitch, part defense, with all of it familiar to anyone who’s followed the UFC for any length of time.

“We appreciate all the fans,” Ellerbe said. “We don’t ever want to turn our back on anyone. But, again, the hardcore fans are the reason why our sport isn’t where football and basketball are. It’s because we stay in our own little box. It’s like, you tell me what’s wrong with these two guys fighting? If you don’t want to watch it, don’t buy it – simple as that. But you can’t be mad and going out there like some media members and promoting, ‘Oh this is why you shouldn’t buy the fight,’ and this and that. Mind your (expletive) business.”

RelatedLeonard Ellerbe: $60 million already in bank for Mayweather-McGregor, so shut up about ticket sales

Did you get all that? Because it’s a lot to take in, even if MMA fans have heard most of it – often in some of the exact same words – from people like UFC President Dana White. It’s some stream-of-consciousness accidental insight into the mind of the fight promoter, which is not to say that it’s entirely wrong.

For instance, the most recognizable part of this approach? The part where Ellerbe assures us that it’s very simple to just not buy the event if we don’t like it? That’s true. A quick review of current statutes reveals that no one is legally required to purchase this pay-per-view, which is a relief. Avoiding a $100 pay-per-view that you don’t want to see is actually shockingly easy.

But Ellerbe’s frustration seems to stem mostly from the answer to his own rhetorical question: “It’s like, you tell me what’s wrong with these two guys fighting?”

RelatedJust how much liability do the sports books face with Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather?

Plenty of people have told him. They’ve told anyone who would listen. They’ve pointed out that this is a boxing match between probably the world’s most accomplished boxer and an opponent who isn’t any boxer at all. They’ve called it a carnival hype job and a cynical cash grab, and they did it without even needing Ellerbe to ask first.

A lot of the criticism of this fight is valid. Some of it is less so. But Ellerbe’s point seems to be that there should be no criticism at all, lest we risk hurting the sport of boxing.

That’s the really baffling part, is his claim that hardcore fight fans are what’s holding fight sports back. He’s talking specifically about boxing, but he could just as well be talking about any combat sports, since they’re all niche worlds with their own little bubbles that exist outside the mainstream sports of football, basketball and baseball.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: 'I already know' what Conor McGregor will do in our fight

The hardcore fans are the reason boxing isn’t where those other sports are, according to Ellerbe. He actually said this, with no apparent sense of irony. The people who follow this sport when others ignore it? They’re the problem, in his view. It’s like saying vegans are the ones holding the hummus industry back.

What Ellerbe means is that the people who know combat sports well enough to care about and call it out when they think it’s made a wrong turn are themselves the problem. The unstated assumption here is that without those people around, promoters could get away with doing anything they want.

One problem with that theory is that, near as I can tell, that’s what’s happening anyway. Mayweather vs. McGregor? It’s happening, and those involved will make a ton of money from it. No one is stopping them, not the media or the athletic commission or the fans.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: Beating Conor McGregor by decision would be 'win for him'

While Ellerbe seems to want people to talk about the fight (it’s literally the only reason to have a pre-fight media day at the gym), he only seems to want to hear enthusiastic support for the purchase of this pay-per-view. Anything else is holding the sport back, apparently, which is why he’d prefer that we mind our business.

And the legitimacy of the fights that promoters are trying to sell us? That’s apparently none of our business. Unless, of course, we’re buying. But if the only thing you want to hear from your customers is credit card numbers with minimal feedback, at some point we might have to wonder who’s really holding back the sport.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Roger Mayweather talks with media during a Floyd Mayweather Jr. (not pictured)media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. presses a workout ball during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/b7XNbrMFarz7bdjEhKnESY/265141", customAnalytics: true, title: "Floyd Mayweather media workout before Conor McGregor fight", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Mark Hunt to headline UFC Fight Night in Sydney vs. Marcin Tybura

Mark Hunt’s career just keeps on trucking.

Hunt, coming off a hard-fought win in his last fight, will return to face Marcin Tybura in the main event of the upcoming UFC Fight Night event in the Australian capital city of Sydney.

Polish website Lowking.pl first reported the match, which MMAjunkie subsequently confirmed with multiple UFC officials. A formal announcement is expected early next week.

The event, which takes place Nov. 19 at Qudos Bank Arena, marks the 11th time the UFC has headed to Australia and fourth to Sidney. Due to the time change, the card airs on Nov. 18 in the U.S. on FS1.

RelatedWith Mark Hunt's win, the most stubborn career in all of MMA trudges on

Hunt (13-11-1 MMA, 8-5-1 UFC) earned a grueling fourth-round TKO win over Derrick Lewis in June at UFC Fight Night 110 in Auckland, New Zealand. In the immediate aftermath of the fight, Hunt, 43, hinted at the possibility of retirement but wasn’t certain.

“Anybody above me is good,” Hunt said of who he wanted to face next. “I stepped down for Derrick because he was No. 6, but anyone above me, I’ll take. I’ve only got a few more fights left, so for me, if it ended here tonight, so be it. I’ve had a good run. I’ve had a lot of fun, traveled the world. But it looks like it’s still continuing.”

Indeed it is, and Tybura (16-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC) is an interesting choice of opponent considering Hunt currently is No. 6 in the official UFC heavyweight rankings, while Tybura sits at No. 10.

Tybura will be coming off of a unanimous-decision win in June at UFC Fight Night 111, where he handed Andre Arlovski his fifth straight loss. It marked Tybura’s third straight victory.

For more on UFC in Sydney, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Mark Hunt (blue gloves) celebrates after defeating Derrick Lewis (red gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) reacts during the fight against Mark Hunt (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Derrick Lewis (red gloves) fights against Mark Hunt (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports Jun 10, 2017; Auckland, NZ; Mark Hunt (blue gloves) reacts after defeating Derrick Lewis (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Spark Arena. Mandatory Credit: Simon Watts-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/56uW6wsofxCW5EMfpRV83Z/265130", customAnalytics: true, title: "Hunt def. Lewis", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: News, UFC

Conor McGregor workout video highlights: I've been lacing up the gloves my whole life

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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

LAS VEGAS – What does Conor McGregor look like as a boxer?

That’s the question everyone wanted answered as a massive swarm of media crowded into the UFC Performance Institute on Friday in Las Vegas. The UFC lightweight champion obliged with a lengthy workout, including 12 simulated rounds of work on the bags, in which the bold Irishman maintained a high output of punches from start to finish.

After an equally lengthy break to shower and eat, McGregor returned to the workout floor, where he held court in front of dozens of cameras for close to 40 minutes.

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-3 UFC), of course, takes on all-time boxing great Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in what could very well prove the biggest combat sporting event of all time.

Check out highlights of McGregor’s work on the mats and on the mic in the video above, and check out an exclusive photo gallery of the day below.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

Are UFC fighters employees or contractors? Why the distinction matters – and could mean millions

Bellator President Scott Coker heard the complaints from his new signees.

Fighters who came over as free agents after their UFC contracts expired had very similar gripes, many of them about the UFC’s “athlete outfitting policy” under an exclusive apparel deal with Reebok. What Coker couldn’t understand was how it was even legal.

“Listen, they’re independent contractors,” Coker said in June. “How they’re forced to wear a uniform, to this day, still baffles me. It should be against the labor laws or something.”

RelatedIs it time to do away with the show money/win bonus pay structure in MMA?

It’s not just the mandatory Reebok fight kits, either. UFC fighters are also forced to participate in an anti-doping program administered by USADA, which requires them to disclose their whereabouts at all times and make themselves available for surprise drug tests.

That’s what rankled former UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw, who discussed the matter on a Team Alpha Male podcast last year. With so many restrictions and requirements, Dillashaw wondered, how could fighters still be classified as independent contractors?

“They treat us like employees, but they don’t give us benefits like employees,” Dillashaw said. “It’s kind of crazy when you think about it. We have to tell them where we’re at at all times so USADA can show up and drug test us, but we don’t get health benefits. It’s kind of crazy that we are controlled. Any time you have to tell work where you’re at and what you’re doing, that’s considered an employee, not a contractor.”

It often seems like an ancillary issue, and one many UFC fighters ignore completely. The state of fighter pay, or the effects that the Reebok deal has had on the sponsor market for individual fighters, these seem to rate higher on the fighters’ lists of grievances.

But as the UFC has placed more restrictions on its fighters, the case for keeping them classified as independent contractors has weakened, according to some observers both in and outside the MMA industry. And if the employment classification of UFC fighters was ever successfully challenged, it could mean major change for the industry leader.

“One consequence for the UFC is if they’re misclassifying employees as independent contractors, then they owe the IRS a lot of money,” said Justin Swartz, an attorney with the firm Outten & Golden, one of the nation’s largest law firms to focus solely on employment law.

RelatedBellator President Scott Coker: UFC-Reebok deal 'should be against the labor laws or something'

Swartz has worked on similar cases involving the misclassification of exotic dancers in New York, where some clubs were eventually forced to pay millions of dollars in settlements after years of misclassifying employees as independent contractors.

“Dancers at strip clubs, they have schedules, they have rules to follow, and they have no business at all without the club,” Swartz said. “In some ways it’s the same with fighters. The fighters rely on the UFC in order to do their business, and they have a dress code, they have a lot of rules. But if they’re getting paid as independent contractors, then they’re paying their own employment tax, and they may be entitled to a refund.”

It’s not just a question of taxes, either. As independent contractors, fighters enjoy fewer protections than they would as employees. Their right to form a union isn’t protected. If they’re fired, they can’t seek unemployment benefits. An injury on the job doesn’t entitle them to workers’ compensation.

By keeping fighters as independent contractors while heaping more and more restrictions on them, the UFC has managed to have the best of both worlds, according to Gary Ibarra, a manager who has represented fighters such as Cung Le and Ben Rothwell. (UFC representatives declined to comment for this story.)

“(The UFC wants) the benefits of having employees, stuff like forcing the guys to wear uniforms, basically, which is an earmark of an employee,” Ibarra said. “But also when certain things happen that would be negatives, then, no, the UFC can say, ‘Hey, they’re independent contractors.’ That’s because, since the UFC has kind of gone unchecked, no one has forced them to adhere to one side or another.”

Which is not to say that a legal challenge couldn’t be forthcoming.

Recent years have seen several such challenges from workers who were long classified as independent contractors. NFL cheerleaders have successfully sued over their employment classification, and states like California have even enacted new laws to categorize them as employees. FedEx drivers have also brought successful cases, and drivers for ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft have also challenged their employment classification.

Such a challenge for UFC fighters could come in several forms, according to Swartz, who said his firm has used different avenues to contest employment status.

“Hiring a lawyer to help you seek overtime pay is one way to go about it,” Swartz said. “Another is to file a complaint with the Department of Labor, or with the IRS over employment taxes.”

Fighters could also seek unemployment benefits after being cut from the UFC, or file a worker’s compensation claim, or seek protections to form a union. Attempts to take actions that their status as independent contractors forbids could be enough to force a decision, Swartz said, but the result and the process could vary depending on which body is asked to issue a ruling.

“The National Labor Relations Board, their test is a little different from the IRS test, which is a little bit different than the Department of Labor test,” Swartz said. “But most of these tests, what they come down to is control and freedom. The way to look at it is, how much does the organization control these folks, and how much freedom do they have to run their own business? You need to look at the totality of the circumstances. Ask yourself, is this person in business for themselves, or do they rely on someone else whose rules they have to follow?”

Ask UFC fighters, and they’ll tell you that they have no shortage of rules to follow outside the cage – and a variety of penalties waiting if they run afoul of those rules. Whether that makes them more than just independent contractors remains to be seen, but if that designation is ever successfully challenged it could have a domino effect that’s felt throughout the MMA world.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, visit the UFC Rumors section of the site.


Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Paulie Malignaggi reacts on Twitter to Conor McGregor sparring footage released by UFC

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539273273001
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, News, UFC

Dana White and the UFC released 22 seconds of footage late Friday night that shows Conor McGregor, for the most part, dominating Paulie Malignaggi during their second sparring session.

The video shows McGregor landing some good, clean, hard shots and also a knockdown – or is it a pushdown?

The two sparring sessions have been a point of contention for Malignaggi, resulting in his abrupt departure from McGregor’s training camp. The retired two-time boxing champion has been vocal about how he’s been misrepresented by McGregor on social media in attempt to make himself look good ahead of his boxing showdown with Floyd Mayweather.

RelatedConor McGregor speaks out on Paulie Malignaggi sparring fallout: 'He took a lot of head trauma'

Did that continue with this hand-picked video footage that only shows a snippet of 20 rounds total the two men sparred?

As you would expect, Malignaggi’s answer is yes, and he backed it up with a lengthy series of tweets.

Lefty vs Conor righty foot position. Holdin head down with right hand while throwin left n moving me into his lead right foot of left stance https://t.co/NV2uTcuIkJ

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

As I've said, we got 36 min last Tues, I've already explained the last 2 rounds were his. I stand by the full 36 min tho. Edit how u like.

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

Pushing my head down with right hand as he's draggin me in that direction by it then throwin the left, the push down is with right hand. https://t.co/txdK1ZQsIi

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

Honestly he disguises it better than I thought or it the angle of the vid, in real time in gym no one thought knockdown we just continued. https://t.co/hXU6Cg37xe

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

U don't see his right hand dragging me behind my neck to the right where his lead right foot from southpaw stance is? Notoriously blind bro. https://t.co/HFebzWIK07

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

What I been saying still holds true, he gets 11 and 12 of which he shows footage and the "knockdown" is right hand draggin me down. 36 min.

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

They have rights to the footage, I've gone over all 20 rounds, he hasn't released anything I didn't already discuss from the start. https://t.co/1wKribHArl

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

That was round 12 which I've openly discussed I was fatigued and lost. The "knockdown" however watch his right hand drag me from behind neck https://t.co/UBttH2QPxL

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

Having said that nothing I've said from the start has been proven different from what actually happens. Footage confirms it, now the rest? https://t.co/UBttH2QPxL

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

Nice view of angles, as I said, none of this footage released 2nite denies anything I haven't already said from the start. 36 minutes. https://t.co/XjJ33QjE1D

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

All love, if it's a knockdown I would admit. I had already admitted 11 n 12 were no good for me. I also stand by the 36 min as a whole tho. https://t.co/9N53xHBg8u

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

Long as it comes out right? Tonight's footage showed nothing that I hadn't already said myself about everything. https://t.co/cRbywONsBZ

— Paul Malignaggi (@PaulMalignaggi) August 12, 2017

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event
expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, News, UFC

Conor McGregor speaks out on Paulie Malignaggi sparring fallout: 'He took a lot of head trauma'

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539286360001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

LAS VEGAS – Much has been made in recent weeks of the fallout between Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi after the retired two-time boxing champion abruptly left McGregor’s training camp following two sparring sessions.

Since his departure, Malignaggi has been critical – that’s putting it mildly – of the way he’s been portrayed by McGregor on social media. Malignaggi, who has claimed he got the better of McGregor, certainly won’t appreciate the 22-second footage UFC President Dana White shared late Friday night of McGregor landing some hard, clean shots on Malignaggi.

RelatedHere's video of Conor McGregor sparring Paulie Malignaggi you've been dying to see

Earlier in the day, McGregor finally addressed the drama for the first time and offered his side of the story.

“He was looking for an exit,” McGregor said during his media workout in Las Vegas. “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.”

RelatedPaulie Malignaggi dishes on fallout with Conor McGregor, 'one of the biggest dirtbags I've ever met'

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event
expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time. McGregor invited Malignaggi to camp to gain experience sparring a high-level boxer ahead of the showdown.

Malignaggi said he accepted the offer with the intention of simply helping McGregor but figured out early on that McGregor’s motivation was to make himself look good at Malignaggi’s expense.

Problems arose between when the UFC lightweight champion posted a photo of himself showboating with his hands behind his back during their first eight-round sparring session. Things escalated after a second photo of McGregor looking down at Malignaggi on the canvas was posted to McGregor’s social media. Malignaggi especially took umbrage with the second photo; he said that moment was the result of a pushdown, which the aforementioned video footage seems to support.

RelatedTwitter Mailbag: Is this McGregor-Malignaggi thing a feud or a plan for the future?

McGregor said he posted only the first photo intentionally, claiming the second photo of the grounded Malignaggi “got leaked.” It was later removed.

Despite whatever miscommunication there might have been between the two men, McGregor maintains that Malignaggi simply couldn’t hang with him in the ring and left because of a hit to his ego.

“He showed (up), he tried his best, it didn’t go his way,” McGregor said. “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.”

RelatedConor McGregor teammate: Paulie Malignaggi left camp because 'his pride was dented'

Malignaggi has said he wouldn’t release any tactical or strategic information following his experience with McGregor.

Mayweather on Thursday called Malignaggi a friend. With that in mind, McGregor was asked if he was worried about Malignaggi spilling anything to Mayweather.

“Let him speak (to Mayweather). I’m sure he has,” McGregor said. “You can’t prepare for me. … There’s nobody in the game that moves like me and that strikes like me and has the confidence like me. So let them talk.”

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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Here's video of Conor McGregor sparring Paulie Malignaggi you've been dying to see

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539273273001
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, News, UFC, Videos

That sparring footage everyone’s been looking for between Conor McGregor and Paulie Malignaggi?

It’s finally here for all to see.

Late Friday night UFC President Dana White shared some clips on his Instagram. And from the looks of it, McGregor seems to land some pretty hard, clean shots on the retired two-time boxing champion.

You can view it all above.

RelatedPaulie Malignaggi is impressed by Conor McGregor's punching power – but not that impressed

Malignaggi has claimed on multiple occasions that he got the better of McGregor during their two sparring sessions and has been critical of how he’s been portrayed on McGregor’s social media.. This snippet tells a different story.

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) will fight Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor “, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.


Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, News, UFC, Videos

Conor McGregor: After Floyd Mayweather I will keep boxing and fight MMA

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539259859001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

LAS VEGAS – Ever since the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor boxing match became official, speculation has been rampant as to whether the UFC lightweight champion will return to MMA after such a massive payday.

McGregor had been mostly coy on the subject, but that all changed Friday night.

RelatedConor McGregor: Floyd Mayweather won't last 2 rounds with me in 8-ounce gloves

Asked during his media workout if he viewed the upcoming Mayweather showdown as an opportunity to change the face of boxing, McGregor flat-out declared his intention to compete in both sports moving forward.

“I love the sport of boxing. Boxing has been dear to my heart my whole, entire life,” McGregor said. “I will contend in boxing bouts going forward, and I will contend in mixed martial arts bouts going forward. I will rule both with an iron fist, and that’s where my mindset is.”

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time.

RelatedConor McGregor opens up on being motivated by infant son during Floyd Mayweather training

McGregor is expected to rake in upwards of $75 million for the fight. By comparison, McGregor said last year he would earn $40 million for three UFC fights in 2016.

Because Mayweather-McGregor is expected to be so lucrative and potentially break financial records, competing in both sports doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility for McGregor. And yet, McGregor remains under contract with the UFC, which could potentially throw a wrench in his plans.

It took UFC President Dana White months to cave on allowing McGregor to take the Mayweather fight. Since the announcement, White has said he expects McGregor to continue fighting for the UFC. He told MMAjunkie in late June that McGregor relayed wishes to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov in Russia, which McGregor later confirmed was one of his desires.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather pupil: Conor McGregor can't be counted out

McGregor’s wishes might not be restricted to simply competing in boxing, either. McGregor’s newly formed company, McGregor Sports and Entertainment, has been featured on all promotional material alongside Mayweather Promotions during the build-up to next month’s fight.

Could managing other boxers under his own promotional banner also be in McGregor’s future?

“We’ll see where it goes,” he said. “The future looks bright.”

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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Marcos Rogerio de Lima off UFC Fight Night 115 after potential USADA anti-doping violation

UFC light heavyweight Marcos Rogerio de Lima will not compete at UFC Fight Night 115 after being flagged by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency for a potential anti-doping violation, the UFC announced Friday night.

De Lima’s potential violation stems from an out-of-competition sample collected on Aug. 1, per a UFC-issued statement, resulting in a provisional suspension by USADA.

De Lima (15-5-1 MMA, 4-3 UFC) was scheduled to face Saparbek Safarov (8-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) on Sept. 2 in Rotterdam, Netherlands. De Lima has alternated wins and losses in his last six bouts, most recently being submitted by Ovince Saint Preux via Von Flue choke in April at UFC Fight Night 108.

Below is the UFC’s full statement:

The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has informed Marcos Rogerio de Lima of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collected on August 1, 2017. Marcos was scheduled to compete at UFC Fight Night: Struve vs. Volkov in Rotterdam, Netherlands on September 2, 2017. USADA has provisionally suspended Rogerio de Lima based on the potential anti-doping violation. Given the provisional suspension and the proximity of the Rotterdam event, Rogerio de Lima has been removed from the card and UFC is currently seeking a replacement.

USADA, the independent administrator of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, will handle the results management and appropriate adjudication of this case involving Rogerio de Lima. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, there is a full and fair legal process that is afforded to all athletes before any sanctions are imposed. Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time as the process moves forward.

The latest UFC Fight Night 115 card now includes:

  • Stefan Struve vs. Alexander Volkov
  • Germaine de Randamie vs. Marion Reneau
  • Siyar Bahadurzada vs. Rob Wilkinson
  • Bryan Barberena vs. Leon Edwards
  • Darren Till vs. Bojan Velickovic
  • Felipe Silva vs. Mairbek Taisumov
  • Islam Makhachev vs. Michel Prazeres
  • Desmond Green vs. Rustam Khabilov
  • Francimar Barroso vs. Aleksandar Rakic
  • Nick Hein vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov
  • Abdul-Kerim Edilov vs. Bojan Mihajlovic

For more on UFC Fight Night 115, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) before his fight against Igor Pokrajac during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) fights against Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) fights against Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) defeats Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports Dec 20, 2014; Barueri, SP, Brazil; Tom Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) celebrates after defeating Igor Pokrajac (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Jose Correa Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) before his fight against Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) fights against Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) knocks down Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) reacts after his fight against Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) reacts after his fight against Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 31, 2014; Sao Paulo, SP, BRAZIL; Marcos Rogerio de Lima (red gloves) reacts after his fight against Richardson Moreira (blue gloves) during the TUF Brazil 3 Finale at Ibirapuera Gymnasium. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/3CHErFAbgmwowMonbnJhTd/265201", customAnalytics: true, title: "Marcos Rogerio de Lima", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: News, UFC

Conor McGregor: Floyd Mayweather won't last 2 rounds with me in 8-ounce gloves

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539268611001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Conor McGregor has predicted he will finish Floyd Mayweather inside of four rounds, but that prediction changes if lighter gloves are in play.

Mayweather recently took to social media to request eight-ounce gloves for his upcoming boxing showdown with the UFC light heavyweight champion, and next week the Nevada State Athletic Commission will decide on the matter.

On Friday, McGregor warned that Mayweather better hope the commission votes no.

RelatedConor McGregor opens up on being motivated by infant son during Floyd Mayweather training

“If we’re eight ounces, I’m struggling to give him two rounds, and that’s the God’s honest truth,” McGregor said at his media workout in Las Vegas. “The only reason I maybe give him two rounds is because in this game the referee stops me from pounding his head into the canvas, and he has 10 seconds to recover. That’s the only reason why he might get to the second round.”

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time.

The Nevada commission typically mandates 10-ounce gloves be worn in boxing bouts at 147 pounds or heavier. Mayweather and McGregor is taking place at 154 pounds. In an email to MMAjunkie, NSAC Executive Director Bob Bennett said the fighters and their representatives will have the opportunity to make the case for eight-ounce gloves.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: Beating Conor McGregor by decision would be 'win for him'

Lighter gloves certainly would seem to provide a slight edge for McGregor, who has never boxed professionally and is used to fighting MMA with four-ounce gloves.

With or without lighter gloves, McGregor remains as confident as ever – and that’s after observing Mayweather during his own media workout one day earlier.

“I see a beaten man in his eyes, in his body language, in everything he does,” McGregor said.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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Conor McGregor opens up on being motivated by infant son during Floyd Mayweather training

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Conor McGregor the fighter, the social media savant is all about flashy – flashy clothes, flashy cars, flashy jewelry, everything flashy.

McGregor the man, though, says don’t mistake what you see on the outside for what he truly is inside.

“I haven’t changed since Day 1,” McGregor told reporters after arriving in a green Lamborghini to Friday’s media workout in Las Vegas. “I’m the same person. I show up to the gym, I work hard, and through my hard work I gain my confidence. That’s been the same since Day 1.

RelatedIt's no 'F-CK YOU' suit, but Conor McGregor's Versace robe is pretty swanky

“What I arrive to the gym in, what I wear to the gym, my home that I go home to, those are things that have changed. They have become nicer. But the fundamentals are still there. I show up, I work hard, and I accomplish through my work.”

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) is set to face Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time. The UFC lightweight champion, making his professional boxing debut, will enter as a big underdog.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: Beating Conor McGregor by decision would be 'win for him'

The fight easily represents the biggest payday of the UFC lightweight champion’s career, estimated to be upwards of $75 million. If there’s one source of motivation that has been dear to his heart throughout training, it’s son Conor Jr., who was born in May.

“He’s been a great motivation this camp,” McGregor said. “I’m in awe of my little boy. I’m in awe of him. Comparing images the other day, and he looks exactly like me. I’m very happy about that.”

pic.twitter.com/jMARJsWHH0

— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) August 9, 2017

Relaxing and watching some fights with my son Conor Jr. pic.twitter.com/8j36hwlqPF

— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) August 8, 2017

McGregor regularly shares photos of Conor Jr. on social media, and his pride in being a father shows each time. McGregor hasn’t spoken publicly about his son much, but on Friday he said he can’t wait until Conor Jr. gets older so he can reflect on this crazy journey and instill the lessons that have made him a success.

RelatedGo inside Conor McGregor's training camp with striking coach Owen Roddy's debut video blog

“That’s one of the things I look forward to the most,” McGregor said. “To show him back my whole career, this crazy journey I’ve been on. And to show him all the hard work and sacrifice that I’ve put into this. He will come up surrounded by many luxuries, but he will always know that it’s hard work that achieves this. In order to achieve great things in this life you must work hard, and that’s the message I will give my son.”

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor enters the workout area during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks to reporters while getting his hands wrapped during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor speaks with reporters after a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor has looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits an uppercut bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 11, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor drinks water during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Floyd Mayweather, Jr. at UFC Performance Institute. 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'Stitch' Duran details why he isn't Conor McGregor's cutman for Floyd Mayweather fight


Filed under: Blue Corner, News, UFC

For perhaps the biggest event in combat sports history, you’d expect the best cutman in the business to be working it. Unfortunately that won’t be the case.

During an appearance Friday on MMAjunkie Radio, noted veteran cutman Jacob “Stitch” Duran detailed how negotiations to corner Conor McGregor for his upcoming boxing showdown with Floyd Mayweather went astray.

RelatedIt's no 'F-CK YOU' suit, but Conor McGregor's Versace robe is pretty swanky

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Mayweather (49-0 boxing) face off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in a pay-per-view event expected to be the most lucrative prize fight of all time, one that Stitch expected to take part in.

As stitch describes, things got off to a good start when McGregor trainer John Kavanagh expressed interest in bringing him on board during an encounter June 24 at Bellator NYC.

“He tells me, ‘I called Conor, and Conor likes the idea,'” Duran said. “So he says the guys will get a hold of (me), (Conor’s) management team. And they did. So we had a nice conversation, and one of the things was the details of what they wanted from me and all that. I had told Jon that I had like four dates already scheduled and asked him if he wrapped hands. He said not for boxing, and I told him I could do that.”

Stitch said he discussed details with a McGregor management team representative. The plan was for Stitch to make himself available not just for fight night, but also throughout training camp. He was on board.

They ironed out some details before price came up.

“I said,” Duran recalls, “‘That I don’t know, because this is a horse of a different color; nobody’s ever been in this position. Boxing, you know, we normally start working at a base of about 2 percent.’ So we talked, and he says, ‘All right, we’ll get back to you.’ So I got a hold of my attorney, because this is pretty big, right? And we sent out a fair proposal.”

That proposal, Duran said, included a price tag of a fraction of 1 percent for his services for the duration of training camp and fight night. Stitch said he again spoke to the McGregor management team rep, who turned negotiations over to a different person.

“Your contact guy is so-and-so,” Duran said. “Used to be an attorney for the UFC. UFC let him go. I never had a great relationship with him, and I don’t think any of the fighters or trainers did. When my attorney and I sent them the proposal, it came back and literally just said that I was too expensive. And they left it at that. There was no counter-offer or anything like that.”

For Stitch, it was a strange – and unfortunate – outcome considering he was approached by the trainer on behalf of the fighter himself. But were Kavanagh and McGregor part of the final decision?

“John Kavanagh sent me a text, and he said, ‘Man, I apologize. We wanted you, but they said you’re too expensive,'” Duran said. “… I don’t know if Conor decides that or not.”

We’re not sure who to blame in all this, but the bottom line is not having Stitch in your corner – when you were close to having him – is McGregor’s loss.

You can listen to Stitch’s entire explanation by fast-forwarding to the 50:35 mark in the video above or by clicking here.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.


Filed under: Blue Corner, News, UFC

Floyd Mayweather pupil: Conor McGregor can't be counted out

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LAS VEGAS – Whether he actually means it or not, professional boxer Gervonta Davis won’t rule Conor McGregor entirely out of the boxing match with mentor Floyd Mayweather.

Davis (18-0), who’s been touted by Mayweather as “the next big thing” in boxing, is set to meet Francisco Fonseca (19-0-1) in the recently announced undercard of the blockbuster. As part of “The Money Team,” it’s likely that the IBF junior-lightweight champ is counting on Mayweather to add a 50th win to his undefeated boxing record when he meets the UFC’s lightweight champ.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: 'I already know' what Conor McGregor will do in our fight

But, at least when speaking to MMA outlets, the boxer is trying to keep his predictions for the Aug. 26 main event quite diplomatic.

“The most (important) thing that fighters need is confidence in themselves,” Davis said during Thursday’s Mayweather media workout in Las Vegas. “Conor has a lot of confidence in himself. He feels like he will win the fight – not only win it, but he will try to knock Floyd out. That’s what he says.

“He’s confident. How can you beat somebody that is so confident? We’re going to have to wait and see.”

Of course, when it comes to the mega boxing showdown at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena, MMA superstar McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and boxing legend Mayweather (49-0 boxing) are the ones getting the attention. And Davis, on his end, seems excited to just be along for the unprecedented promotional ride.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather: Beating Conor McGregor by decision would be 'win for him'

But, for the 22-year-old rising star, filling the night’s co-feature slot also carries some personal meaning.

“Just coming where I come from,” Davis said. “Just being on pay-per-view. Just being on a Floyd undercard. I remember when Floyd fought Canelo (Alvarez, in September of 2013); I was fighting in the Golden Gloves that year.

“And it was like, ‘If you win, you get a ticket to a Floyd fight.’ I won, I got a ticket, and my seat was all the way up in the stands, so I’m thankful and grateful for how far I came in this sport. It shows that my hard work paid off.”

Davis, who was with Mayweather during last month’s widely publicized four-country media tour, ended up catching some of McGregor’s verbal fire. But judging by the wide smile with which he’ll admit to that, he seems to have taken it all in stride.

RelatedFloyd Mayweather plans to come out firing against Conor McGregor, assistant trainer says

“It was like a fight there at the press conference,” Davis said. “People were screaming (McGregor’s) name, they were screaming Floyd’s name. I was excited just to be a part of it.”

And while the idea of McGregor carrying a zero-fight boxing record has drawn the skepticism – or even downright ire – from practitioners of both sports, Davis himself doesn’t have the slightest issue with the matchup.

“I’m honestly happy that it happened, because it’s two combat sports coming together making a big event,” Davis said. “Even the press conference was fun, so just imagine the fight. I feel it’s going to be a great event. The fans will be happy. Floyd will retire after this. So I think it will be great.”

To hear more from Davis, check out the video above.

And for more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

The Blue Corner is MMAjunkie‘s official blog and is edited by Mike Bohn.

Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Roger Mayweather talks with media during a Floyd Mayweather Jr. (not pictured)media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. presses a workout ball during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/b7XNbrMFarz7bdjEhKnESY/265093", customAnalytics: true, title: "Floyd Mayweather media workout before Conor McGregor fight", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
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With finance career on hold, Miesha Tate-managed Gustavo Lopez eyes UFC deal

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Filed under: News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos

For some, pursuing fighting as a career stems from a lack of options. For others, it’s a logical development of lifelong athletic pursuits. But for bantamweight Gustavo Lopez, it was a conscious choice that took straying away from what was probably a safer path.

Lopez, 28, trains during the week and works two jobs – as security and as a busser – on the weekends to cover the bills. While his day-to-day isn’t that big of a departure from that of many up-and-comers who have yet to make it to the big stages, it’s one that would probably be a bit more comfortable had he not decided to go with his gut.

“I was starting my finance career, and I’m like, ‘My passion is in fighting,'” Lopez told MMAjunkie Radio. “I love to fight. I love to train. I was trying to do both. It was super stressful, and I just (said to myself), ‘You know what? I can always go back. I’ve got my degree. It doesn’t go away. It does’t expire. I’m still keep up on that stuff. If I ever need or would like to go back to it, the option is there.’

“Other than a bachelor’s (degree) in finance, I’ve got two associates in business accounting. (I’m) a very savvy, very smart with numbers, very intelligent kind of guy. But my passion is in competing. I want to be the best in the world. Right now, the pinnacle of fighting is being the UFC champion.”

Lopez (8-2) is currently riding a two-fight winning streak – both stemming from first-round submissions. The first of those, at Combate Americas, came over someone whose last name may sound familiar: Steve Swanson, UFC contender Cub Swanson’s older brother. It was a big one too; Swanson was coming off four straight knockout wins before getting caught in the first round by Lopez.

Considering his consecutive dominant displays, Lopez and his manager –  former UFC bantamweight champion Miesha Tate, who also happens to be his close friend and training partner of seven years – think that a big leap might be in the horizon.

RelatedGina Mazany talks pros and cons – well, just pros – of having ex-UFC champ Miesha Tate as manager

“We both feel like we’re one, two fights away from just getting already in the UFC,” Lopez said.

In the meantime, however, Lopez wants to stay as active as possible. While he is a five-fight Combate Americas veteran, Lopez actually has an open contract that allows him to explore his options. The weekly Dana White’s Contender Series events on UFC Fight Pass, for instance, could be one of them.

“There’s a chance,” Lopez said. “There are some bantamweights I feel I can just dominate.”

But, willing to fight at either flyweight or bantamweight, the 28-year-old fighter also sees a possibility of bypassing the weekly series and making it straight to the octagon – even if that means taking a short-notice call. If not, there’s certainly no lack of options.

“(PFL President) Ray Sefo offered me a fight already, on the biggest (PFL) show here,” Lopez said. “Combate (Americas), (I’m) still talking to them, because even though I’m not under contract with them, if they keep me active, I’d love to keep fighting with them. Because they’re a great promotion and good fanbase, all Hispanics, all Latino. They treat their fighters really well.”

Despite the momentum, fact is that Lopez is still unable to support himself exclusively with fighting. And like probably everyone in his position, he certainly would like to change it. Which is what he hopes will happen now that he’s being managed by Tate and her agency, AO8.

“The plan, hopefully, with this management is picking up these big sponsors that would (say) like, ‘Hey, what’s your rent? What’s your this? What are your necessities? We’ll pay for it. Do your thing. We’re going to support you.'” Lopez said. “That’s the dream.

“I’d love to fight four to five times (a year), maybe. Even more, if possible. If I go in there and dominate like I know I can, I’ll keep fighting every couple of months. I have no kids. I just have my girl and my dogs, and now a cat. I love to train and fight. I’d love to do as much as possible, if I could. Working, it’s a necessity right now to pay the bills.”

For more on upcoming MMA schedule, check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

MMAjunkie Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.


Filed under: News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos

Just how much liability do the sports books face with Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather?

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

(This is the second installment of a three-part series on the gambling aspect of the “The Money Fight” between boxer Floyd Mayweather and UFC champ Conor McGregor. Check out Part 1.)

If Conor McGregor, a man who despite a championship MMA career, has never been paid to put on boxing gloves, somehow manages to beat undefeated, five-division boxing world champ Floyd Mayweather at his own game on Aug. 26, it will go down as one of the greatest upsets in sports history.

But in that instance, believe it or not, Mayweather (49-0 boxing) might not be the biggest loser. After all, the 40-year-old retired pug will have a possible $300-million-plus purse to assuage any humiliation. And of course underdog fish-out-of-octagon McGregor really has nothing to lose (and a reported $100-million-plus to gain). The people who might be sweating the outcome of “The Money Fight” from a financial standpoint are those who ply their trade in a different kind of cage – that of the Vegas sportsbook cashier.

A contest between mismatched opponents can be a dream for bettors, either looking to score a little scratch on a sure thing, or drop a pittance with long hopes of scoring big on an upset. But those same conditions make lopsided fights an uneasy proposition for sportsbooks. Bookmakers want to accurately handicap the event, but if they lay odds that favor a competitor too much, all the action will go to the underdog. And if that dog then shocks the world, the house might not have enough money to cover its losses.

RelatedSo, how do you determine odds for Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather, anyway?

Twenty years ago when unknown James “Buster” Douglas upended the boxing world by knocking out then-undefeated Mike Tyson, no bettors got rich – because almost no bookmakers had taken bets on the seeming farce.

Douglas was a 42-1 underdog in that 1990 fight. Today, the odds against McGregor are only around 5 to 1. Still, sportsbooks and bettors are watching the lines closely.

“In terms of true odds, Mayweather should be a much greater favorite,” Todd Fuhrman, gaming insider for Fox Sports and CBS, told MMAjunkie. “But sportsbooks can only incur so much liability. As is, books in Vegas are facing a high-six-figure, low-seven-figure liability if McGregor pulls it out. If he does pull off the unthinkable, you’ll hear a lot of sportsbooks crying about how they’re going to pay the power bill on Aug. 27.”

Jay Rood, vice president of race and sports at MGM Resorts, is trying to make sure that doesn’t happen. He and his fellow Vegas bookmakers have been extra conservative, Rood even already having dropped Mayweather from a $7 opening bet to $4.50.

“This is the biggest liability we’ve faced on a boxing match in six or seven years – and we’re still a month away,” said Rood.

As of late July, McGregor was still outpacing Mayweather on volume in the MGM books, the Irishman drawing around 3,000 wagers to the boxer’s 70. But Rood said the amount of money was still fairly close. Even though Mayweather’s odds aren’t attractive to a large number of casual bettors, no one was risking big money on a McGregor upset.

Meanwhile, for seasoned gamblers, betting big on Mayweather seems like a pretty solid business proposition.

RelatedLeonard Ellerbe: $60 million already in bank for Mayweather-McGregor, so shut up about ticket sales

“This will be the biggest bet I’ve ever made in my life. I’m going to go out and bet this fight because it’s stealing money,” said Anthony Albanese, odds consultant for Diamond Sportsbook, an offshore betting service that as of late July, had McGregor at +675. “I think that’s insane. If you lay 675 (on Mayweather) right now you’re stealing. I think you’re printing money laying at that price.”

With far less overhead, less-strict government regulation, and a desire to draw bigger players, offshore sites like Diamond Sportsbook can be a little more adventuresome with their odds. When the fight was first announced, there was stark disparity between Vegas’ numbers and those of the offshore sites, but that gap has narrowed as all odds makers try to find their level of comfort. Of course, lines will move with every circus-sideshow press conference and particularly in the days and hours leading up to the actual Aug. 26, which airs on pay-per-view (for $100) from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Albanese said even time-zone difference may come into play, with a flurry of activity coming from McGregor’s native Ireland and Europe spurring a North American response later in the day.

“We’ll let it unfold and see where we find ourselves,” MGM’s Rood said. “If we see zero support for Mayweather, you might see the numbers really drop before the fight starts, with some unbelievable deals relative to opening odds—a guaranteed win with relatively zero risk.”

Rood said he’s not worried about his own risk and that of the book. He said he’s “fairly confident” he’ll see the balance he needs in wagers to offset the liability. In his business, it’s never a good idea to overreact.

“As long as this fight goes off without some sort of incident and there’s a good honest effort by both fighters, the crowd feels they got their money’s worth, and fans have legitimate opportunity to cash their ticket, it’ll be good for everybody,” Rood said.

For more on “The Money Fight: Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor,” check out the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Tony Rehagen is a freelance writer based in St. Louis. His work has appeared in Men’s Health, GQ, espnW and others. Follow him on Twitter @trehagen.

Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. warms up in the ring during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. talks with members of the media during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Roger Mayweather talks with media during a Floyd Mayweather Jr. (not pictured)media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws punches with weights in his hands during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a body pad during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a speed bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. looks on during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. hits a heavy bag during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. presses a workout ball during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Aug 10, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. sips a beverage during a media workout in preparation for his fight against Conor McGregor at Mayweather Boxing Club. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports jQuery.extend( window._usmgOptions,{ scriptUrl: "https://s2.wp.com/wp-content/themes/vip/usatoday-plugins/api-galleries/assets", analyticsCallback: "galleryAnalytics", fullscreenUrl: "http://mmajunkie.com/sigallery/b7XNbrMFarz7bdjEhKnESY/265075", customAnalytics: true, title: "Floyd Mayweather media workout", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
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