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Fighters start 'McGregor Challenge' by mocking Conor McGregor's flailing-arm warmup

UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor has once again become the center of an Internet meme, this time with the “McGregor Challenge.”

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) hosted an open workout this past Friday in Las Vegas ahead of his Aug. 26 boxing match with Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing). “The Notorious” has always done things a little bit outside the norm, and his arm-flailing warmup was the latest moment to capture attention (via Instagram):

The Irishman is no stranger to going viral. From his famous “Who the (expletive) is that guy?” comment to his “(Expletive) you” suit, custom-made Versace robe and more, McGregor has provided plenty of buzzy moments over the years.

Opinions on the effectiveness of McGregor’s warmup strategy vary, but several within the combat sports world, such as former world champion boxer Terence Crawford, UFC veteran Gilbert Smith and more, created videos mocking McGregor (via Instagram):

McGregor meets Mayweather at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The event airs on pay-per-view for a high definition price tag of $99.95.

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.

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

Conor McGregor is flying out fan who performed ukulele song to Floyd Mayweather fight

Conor McGregor is doing a hefty service for one of his most creative fans ahead of his boxing match with Floyd Mayweather later this month.

Fellow Irishman Mick Konstantin went viral this past week when he posted a catchy song detailing McGregor’s journey from relative obscurity to the cusp of participating in arguably the grandest combat sports event in history. It was all done on the ukulele with custom lyrics, and the song caught the attention of the UFC lightweight champion (via Facebook):

Not only was McGregor pleased with the uniqueness of the song, he opted to reward Konstantin for his fandom. “The Notorious” revealed to MMAFighting.com that he plans to fly Konstantin and a friend out to Las Vegas on his own dime and ensure they have tickets to watch him fight Mayweather.

“It was one hell of a song. It’s a very catchy song. We actually reached out to the guy. I had my people reach out to the guy, and we’re booking him a flight – him plus one. I’m going to bring him over to the fight and get him tickets and put him up in a hotel, and I’ll meet him after the fight. It’s one hell of a song.”

McGregor meets Mayweather at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The event airs on pay-per-view for a high-definition price tag of $99.95.

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.

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/si9zxJPMHPwke8HK2qGqF9/265534", customAnalytics: true, title: "Mayweather-McGregor world tour madness", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, Featured Videos, News, UFC, Videos

Report: Tae Hyun Bang indicted for alleged fight-fixing plan at 2015 UFC event

UFC lightweight Tae Hyun Bang reportedly has been indicted for allegedly taking a bribe in connection with his bout against Leo Kuntz at UFC Fight Night 79.

According tokoreaherald.com, Bang is no longer a UFC fighter and will go to trial without being detained. Also indicted are several “brokers” who allegedly set up the fix, including MMA fighter Dae Won Kim.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors Office, a branch of South Korea’s Ministry of Justice that is similar to the FBI, announced the indictment.

As of Monday morning, Bang (18-10 MMA, 2-3 UFC) remains listed on the UFC’s website. UFC officials and his manager did not immediately respond to a request for comment. When an investigation into the 34-year-old fighter was announced in April, the promotion declined to comment.

RelatedUFC warned Tae Hyun Bang, Leo Kuntz about fight fixing; Bang investigated in South Korea

Bang, 34, then allegedly admitted he’d tried to fix his bout with Kuntz, only to later change his mind after being warned by UFC officials. He allegedly accepted a bribe of approximately $87,000 while wagering approximately $43,000 on Kuntz.

After beating Kuntz via split decision at the event, which took place Nov. 28, 2015, at Olympic Gymnastics Arena in Seoul, Bang received death threats from organized crime figures, who bet approximately $1.7 million on Kuntz.

Just hours before the fight, the massive wager turned Bang into a massive underdog, prompting UFC officials to go backstage and issue a stern warning to both fighters.

“The UFC seemed like they knew something was definitely not right,” Kuntz told MMAjunkie in April after the investigation was announced. “They told me it was the largest odd swing they’d seen in MMA and last minute. They told me, ‘Hey, if either one of you guys goes out there and doesn’t fight, you should prepare to be investigated.'”

According to a person close to the fighter at the time of the UFC’s warning, Bang and his camp denied knowledge of any of fight-fixing.

It’s been 11 months since Bang competed in the octagon. He most recently lost a unanimous decision to Nick Hein at UFC Fight Night 93, bringing his promotion record to 2-3.

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

Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports Sep 3, 2016; Hamburg, Germany; Nick Hein (red gloves) competes against Tae Hyun Bang (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Barclaycard Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-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/fNTWDxVE79ZLyTTXBPuWF9/265564", customAnalytics: true, title: "Hein def. Bang", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Conor McGregor's uncanny ability to will things into existence is why he's fighting Floyd Mayweather

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5537310053001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

Dave Sholler first met Conor McGregor in August 2013 at UFC Fight Night 26, and he won’t ever forget his first impression of the then 25-year-old fighter – particularly that strut – about to make just his second octagon appearance against Max Holloway.

“I remember meeting him at the Wang Theater in Boston, and he walked kind of behind the curtain,” Sholler, the former UFC vice president of public relations, told MMAjunkie. “And he has that big, like (WWE Chairman and CEO) Vince McMahon swagger walk that he has. And he walks that way every day. He walks into the convenience store that way. He walks into Target that way. That’s how Conor walks.

“And I remember saying, ‘Man, this guy’s got some confidence.’ And I remember it just stuck with me.”

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

Four years later, that confidence has led McGregor to accomplish so much.

He won the UFC interim featherweight title. He unified the featherweight title in stunning fashion. Then he won the lightweight title, which made him the first fighter in UFC history to simultaneously hold belts in two divisions.

After all that, now there’s “The Money Fight.”

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) faces Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing) in a boxing match 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.

That McGregor, with zero professional boxing experience, has put himself in position to earn a potential $100 million – his biggest payday by a long shot – is an astonishing achievement in itself.

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

“What this guy has turned into and what he’s become is incredible,” UFC President Dana White told MMAjunkie during last month’s Mayweather-McGregor world tour. “I call him the unicorn. He’s unlike anybody I’ve ever dealt with.”

McGregor has called his shots the entire way, too.

He said he’d beat Chad Mendes for the interim featherweight title and did. He said he’d beat Jose Aldo to become undisputed champion and knocked out the greatest featherweight of all time in 13 seconds. He said he’d beat Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight title and made it look easy.

Conor McGregor became the first UFC fighter to win titles in two divisions at UFC 205. (USA TODAY Sports)

Sholler saw all of it happen up close. He admitted he thought none of it would.

“There have been times where I’m like, ‘There’s no way Conor is beating this guy,'” Sholler said. “There’s no way Conor can outstrike Jose Aldo or survive the wrestling of Chad Mendes or not get pinned up against the fence against Eddie Alvarez. … They’re so highly proficient in those skills. You look at Conor, you’re like, ‘How’s he going to solve this puzzle?’

“He says it, and he does it. And we laugh. He calls himself ‘Mystic Mac.’ But damn, he knows what he’s talking about.”

For more than a year before Mayweather-McGregor became a serious idea, the two men trash-talked each other on social media. Of course, McGregor instigated it; he wanted this fight all along. Initially nobody thought anything would come of the barbs. White was against the idea of McGregor boxing Mayweather.

RelatedCan McGregor beat Mayweather? Doubtful, but MMA fighters with boxing experience have ideas

But as the Twitter and Instagram posts increased, the media started asking questions. Mostly it was just McGregor doing the talking, with the former pound-for-pound boxing king comfortably retired.

Sholler, who left the UFC in November 2016 to become the Philadelphia 76ers vice president of communications, was with the MMA-industry leader when Mayweather-McGregor was still just a fantasy. But it was a fantasy being talked about loudly by the UFC lightweight champion.

For all the reasons you’d expect – Would White go for it? Would Showtime go for it? Would Mayweather go for it? – Sholler didn’t believe the fight had a chance at becoming reality.

“I don’t want to say I said never,” Sholler said. “… But I just didn’t know if it could get across the line.”

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

Four months after Sholler’s departure from the UFC, and still roughly three months before an official announcement, McGregor erupted on boxing media at Madison Square Garden, declaring “I am boxing” for the first time. That was the moment that convinced Sholler.

“I said, ‘This guy – he’s doing it again,'” Sholler said. “‘He’s willing this thing into existence.’ And I’ll be damned. He gets Dana on board, he gets Showtime on board, and he gets Floyd on board. He’s a special character.”

So here we are, fewer than two weeks away from what’s being called the biggest event in the history of combat sports – one expected to break records. McGregor naturally is a big underdog against Mayweather. To many, he stands zero chance at winning – or even landing a punch of consequence.

McGregor, meanwhile, is supremely confident, guaranteeing he’ll finish Mayweather inside of four rounds – or two if they fight in eight-ounce gloves.

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

Sholler understands why there are so many McGregor doubters, but he’s also seen how this story line ends before. The way Sholler sees it, McGregor’s left hand is “the great equalizer” – land that, and McGregor has “the chance to change the course of Floyd Mayweather’s history.”

“Conor McGregor, to me, is the one human being in my lifetime that I’ve met that believes everything that comes out of his mouth,” Sholler said. “And I don’t mean that negatively. He talks a lot about visualization. I think it’s a powerful tool to be quite honest. A lot of us in our lives are trying to get to certain points, and I think getting there is a lot easier when you can visualize it – touch it, taste it, feel it. Conor believes and wills things into existence.”

A win over Mayweather would be the biggest thing yet.

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: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (1 p.m. ET) with T.J. Dillashaw, Jorge Masvidal, Jhenny Andrade, Ana Julaton, Angelo Reyes


Filed under: News, UFC

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off today at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guests T.J. Dillashaw, Jorge Masvidal, Jhenny Andrade, Ana Julaton and Angelo Reyes.

Ex-champ Dillashaw is expected to fight current bantamweight titleholder Cody Garbrandt later this year. Masvidal wants to meet Stephen Thompson at UFC 217. Andrade is a ring UFC octagon girl, and she’s in studio with ONE Championship vet Ana Julaton and boxing coach Angelo Reyes.

MMAjunkie Radio airs from 1 to 3 p.m. ET (10 a.m. to noon PT), live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. You can watch and listen live on MMAjunkie’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, SiriusXM Rush (Ch. 93) carries a replay later in the day (8-10 p.m. ET) and the following morning (7-9 a.m. ET), or catch a replay on demand.

MMAjunkie Radio listener guide:

  • HOW TO WATCH (ON WEB): Watch a live stream on MMAjunkie’s Facebook or YouTube pages.
  • HOW TO CALL: MMAjunkie Radio takes phone calls from listeners throughout the show. Call into the MMAjunkie Radio hotline at (866) 522-2846.
  • HOW TO DISCUSS: The MMAjunkie MMA Forums has a section devoted solely to MMAjunkie Radio. Stop by the MMAjunkie Radio forum to discuss the show, interact with the hosts, suggest future guests and catch up on the latest MMAjunkie Radio news.
  • HOW TO VISIT THE SHOW: You can watch MMAjunkie Radio live and in person at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip. The booth is located in the resort’s Race & Sports Book next to the Mandalay Bay poker room. To plan a trip to Sin City and MMAjunkie Radio, go to www.mandalaybay.com.

Filed under: News, UFC

Debut of Conor McGregor's 'The Mac Life' vlog goes inside Las Vegas open workout


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

UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor is releasing his own video blog series in the lead-up to his Aug. 26 boxing match with Floyd Mayweather.

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC), who meets Mayweather (49-0 boxing) in the pay-per-view headliner at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, launched TheMacLife.com this past year to provide exclusive insight and updates on his career.

The first edition of his vlog series for the Mayweather fight goes behind the scenes of this past Friday’s open workout at the UFC Performance Institute in Las Vegas. “The Notorious” put in a 12-round workout the spoke to the media at length about the fight and much more.

Watch the video above to see Episode 1 of “The Mac Life” vlog series for McGregor vs. Mayweather.

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.

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/si9zxJPMHPwke8HK2qGqF9/265519", customAnalytics: true, title: "Mayweather-McGregor world tour madness", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured Videos, News, UFC

UFC 215: Latest fight card and trailer – with champ Demetrious Johnson chasing a major record

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5540615476001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

Sure, another major event has captured the spotlight, but the UFC soon returns with a pay-per-view event.

UFC officials have largely cleared their August schedule to throw their promotional muscle behind the Aug. 26 boxing mega-fight between UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Floyd Mayweather (49-0 boxing). But on Sept. 9, the UFC hosts UFC 215, a championship doubleheader.

The PPV event takes place Sept. 9 at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and the main card follows prelims on FX and UFC Fight Pass.

RelatedHere's the official poster for UFC 215, featuring 2 title fights and heavyweight hitters

Check out a preview of the event – and its top three fights – above.

In the main event, flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson (26-2-1 MMA, 14-1-1 UFC) looks for his record 11th consecutive title defense when he takes on challenger Ray Borg (11-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC).

Johnson, who’s No. 1 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA flyweight rankings (and No. 2 pound-for-pound), could break middleweight great Anderson Silva’s longstanding title-defense record if victorious. “Mighty Mouse” is currently a 10-1 favorite to beat No. 5-ranked Borg, who’s won two straight and five of his past six, though he missed weight on two occasions.

RelatedUFC champ Demetrious Johnson wins 'Best Fighter' ESPY over Conor McGregor, Gennady Golovkin

In the co-headliner, women’s bantamweight titleholder and No. 1-ranked female 135-pounder Amanda Nunes (14-4 MMA, 7-1 UFC) rematches No. 2-ranked Valentina Shevchenko (14-2 MMA, 3-1 UFC). Nunes, who took the title from Miesha Tate during her current five-fight winning streak, also defeated No. 2-ranked Shevchenko via unanimous decision during her current run. Shevchenko has since rebounded with wins over ex-champ Holly Holm (decision) and Julianna Pena (submission).

UFC 215 also features a major heavyweight clash as ex-champ and No. 5-ranked Junior Dos Santos (18-5 MMA, 12-4 UFC) takes on No. 9 Francis Ngannou (10-1 MMA, 5-0 UFC). Although Dos Santos lost to champ Stipe Miocic in his most recent bout, a title shot could be on the line for him or Ngannou, who’s won nine straight, including five in the UFC (four knockouts and one submission).

The latest UFC 215 lineup includes:

    • Champ Demetrious Johnson vs. Ray Borg – for flyweight title
    • Champ Amanda Nunes vs. Valentina Shevchenko – for women’s bantamweight title
    • Junior Dos Santos vs. Francis Ngannou
    • Gilbert Melendez vs. Jeremy Stephens
    • Rafael dos Anjos vs. Neil Magny
    • Sara McMann vs. Ketlen Vieira
    • Ilir Latifi vs. Tyson Pedro
    • Henry Cejudo vs. Wilson Reis
    • Rick Glenn vs. Gavin Tucker
    • Arjan Bhullar vs. Luis Henrique
    • Ashlee Evans-Smith vs. Sarah Moras
    • Kajan Johnson vs. Adriano Martins
    • Mitch Clarke vs. Alex White

For more on UFC 215, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) following the win over and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) before the fight against Wilson Reis (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red) and Wilson Reis (Blue) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports 2Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (red) celebrates following the win over and Wilson Reis (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) fight during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) reacts to fight against Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports Apr 15, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Demetrious Johnson (Red Gloves) following the win over and Wilson Reis (Blue Gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Sprint Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-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/egQcjuD37BzoaBxbxpqg5m/265509", customAnalytics: true, title: "Johnson def. Reis", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC, Videos

Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor 2? Sounds absurd, but it's not impossible

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5539301744001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

(This story first published at usatoday.com.)

There is only one event in the immediate future of boxing and MMA that could possibly be bigger than Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor.

That would be Mayweather vs. McGregor 2, a rematch at some point next year and an outcome that almost certainly hinges on the UFC lightweight champion somehow producing a boxing miracle en route to a shock for the ages.

So much of the madness surrounding the pay-per-view event, now less than two weeks away on Aug. 26 in Las Vegas, has stretched the bounds of imagination, with the mere fact of its existence an extraordinary tale of modern promotional and social media forces. The idea that it could happen again is absurd, but no less so than the suggestion several months back that Mayweather could take on a man who has never boxed professionally or even to a serious level in the amateur ranks.

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

“I am one and done on this,” UFC President Dana White said, admitting that he might consider promoting boxing events at some point down the road but has little appetite for a repeat of seeing his most popular star step once more into the boxing ring.

Yet White also believes McGregor has a realistic shot to win at T-Mobile Arena, that his punching power can stun the 40-year-old former pound-for-pound king and stop Mayweather’s perfect professional streak at 49 wins. If that unthinkable outcome emerges, or if another bizarre turn that leads to a McGregor triumph takes place – if Mayweather twists his knee and can’t move, if he suffers a freak eye injury, or is disqualified for late blows – then a rematch would no longer be an outside chance at all.

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

At that stage it becomes virtually inevitable. With Mayweather slated to top $150 million and McGregor $100 million plus, a redo in such circumstances would likely generate even more hype and intrigue. Next time around both men could rake in $150 million or more, and guess what? If Mayweather won that to level the scores then a trilogy fight to decide it would make perfect sense, too.

No one much is buying into the theory, at least not publicly. Mayweather has consistently said it will be his last fight, and his advisor Leonard Ellerbe was at pains to stress this is a “one-time thing” last week.

But in the next breath Ellerbe, with a twinkle in his eye, said “you never know what might happen next” and indeed, for all the hoopla surrounding this promotion, never a truer word was spoken. We just don’t know.

Perhaps, probably, a rematch is the stuff of fairytales and conspiracy theorists. Yet once upon a time not so long ago, so too was this fight.

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. 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/68dBFQsn94fMkuPbDjykuH/265430", customAnalytics: true, title: "Conor McGregor media workout before Floyd Mayweather fight", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

UFC/WEC veteran Javier Vazquez opens up about cancer diagnosis in emotional, inspiring video


Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

Javier Vazquez, a big-show MMA vet who’s fought for the UFC and WEC, is a “pretty private person,” but he felt he owed his supporters a message of thanks.

As reported this past week, the 41-year-old was recently diagnosed with colon cancer, which prompted the creation of a GoFundMe page to raise money for his treatment and living expenses during a lengthy recovery process.

RelatedGoFundMe launched for UFC/WEC veteran Javier Vazquez after colon cancer diagnosis

“To be honest guys, I was quite shocked at the amount of support and love – and my family was shocked,” he said in a 19-minute-long Facebook video in which he discusses his current battle and future plans. “It was just an amazing blessing that everybody has been supporting me – and the amount of love and support that everyone’s been showing me. I had to address people that went out of their way to donate to the fund, and it’s been a really, really amazing journey so far.”

As of this morning, the fund had surpassed its $35,000 goal and had crossed the $37,000 mark. Vazquez, who recently went through a divorce and stepped away from his gym (Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Rancho Cucamonga in California) as part of the process, currently is facing six months of chemotherapy – and likely years of treatment afterward. He said he’s not sure when he can teach again.

Javier Vazquez

Vazquez (16-5 MMA, 1-0 UFC) hasn’t fought since a UFC-debut win over Joe Stevenson in 2011, which concluded his career – one that included an EliteXC stint and KOTC title – with a 3-1 run. During his 13-year pro run, the featherweight and lightweight fighter met the likes of Chad Mendes and L.C. Davis while picking up victories over Jens Pulver, Mackens Semerzier and Rob Emerson.

After his retirement and while traveling the country for his popular seminars, the Cuban-American and Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt began experiencing abdominal pains, which eventually led to a cancer diagnosis and surgery, he said. Surgeons removed 12 polyps, four of which were cancerous.

The diagnosis was surprising to Vazquez, who said he’s “pretty much vegan” and leads a healthy and active lifestyle.

Unable to teach because of his recovery and divorce settlement, Vazquez said the outpouring of support from the GoFundMe drive has been a blessing.

“I felt like I had to say something because the support has been overwhelming,” he said. ” … Sometimes life’s biggest challenges, you can take them and crumble under them, or you can embrace them, learn from them and grow from them.

“So I’m trying to do that – trying to stay positive.”

Ultimately, he said, he simply wants to return to teaching.

“I can’t mention everybody, but know that I appreciate you guys all, and you guys have always known that – that my commitment has always been to the students,” he said. “My commitment has has always been to the friendships and the bonds that we’ve made as friends.”

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

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


Filed under: News, UFC, Videos

MGM Resorts offering the only Mayweather-McGregor closed circuit viewing on Las Vegas Strip

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. 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Going to be in Las Vegas on Aug. 26 and want to watch the biggest event in combat sports history but can’t spend an absurd amount of money to be there in person?

Closed circuit might be the next best thing.

UFC lightweight champion Conor 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.

Only MGM Resorts will be providing closed circuit viewing parties on the Las Vegas Strip to watch the highly anticipated boxing showdown.

They will be hosted at the following locations:

  • Bellagio – Grand Ballroom
  • MGM Grand – Marquee Ballroom, Tap Sports Bar
  • Mandalay Bay – Mandalay Bay Theatre, Light Nightclub
  • The Mirage – Love Theatre, Mirage Grand Ballroom
  • Monte Carlo – Park Theater, Diablo’s Cantina, Double Barrel
  • New York-New York – Zumanity Theater, Nine Fine Irishmen
  • Luxor – Criss Angel Theater
  • Excalibur – Tournament of Kings Arena
  • Circus Circus – Garden Grill Ballroom

Click here for more information.

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

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5513192455001
Filed under: News, UFC

Matt Hughes' friend shares picture, update on UFC legend: Progress 'nothing short of a miracle'

Matt Hughes went out for sushi, and that is some encouraging news.

Hughes, 43, was involved in a scary accident on June 16, when a train reportedly struck the passenger side of his truck as he crossed railroad tracks in Montgomery County, Ill. As a result, Hughes was airlifted to a nearby hospital. He was in a coma and put on a ventilator.

Late Sunday night, close friend Tony Zucca posted a photo of himself and Hughes on social media to offer the latest update on his condition, calling his progress “nothing short of a miracle” – and that includes a quick departure from the hospital to grab some sushi (via Instagram).

I can’t even describe the emotions I am feeling as I write this post. Less than two months ago I didn’t know if my best friend was going to make it, and tonight we made a jail break for sushi (in disguise. Ha). Talk about a rollercoaster of emotions! His progress is nothing short of a miracle. He is working so hard and fights through the frustration. He is, as he’s always been, an inspiration. I can’t wait to hit the mats with him again…and he told me today that he has “one more round” left in him! Ha. (He laughed…but definitely wasn’t joking!). Thank you for all of your prayers! Please keep them up as he still has a long road ahead of him. I am witnessing the power of them firsthand! So thankful!

It’s uplifting to read that update, but it also echoes the message from Hughes’ sister last month, that he still faced a “long journey for his recovery,” even though he was taken off the ventilator.

One of the greatest welterweights in MMA history, Hughes (45-9 MMA, 18-7 UFC) held the title from 2001-2004 and 2004-2006, defending his belt on seven different occasions.

Here’s hoping the legend’s journey continues trending in the right direction.

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

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

Mar 15, 2013; Montreal, Quebec, Canada;former UFC fighter Matt Hughes speaks to the fans during the weight-in for UFC 158 at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 6, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC welterweight bout fighter Matt Hughes during weigh ins for UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 6, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC welterweight bout fighter Matt Hughes (left) stands face to face with Ricardo Almeida during weigh ins for UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 7, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC fighter Ricardo Almeida (left) against Matt Hughes (right) during the welterweight bout in UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 7, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC fighter Matt Hughes during the welterweight bout in UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 7, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC fighter Matt Hughes (left) against Ricardo Almeida (right) during the welterweight bout in UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 7, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC fighter Matt Hughes (black shorts) against Ricardo Almeida (green shorts) during the welterweight bout in UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Aug. 7, 2010; Oakland, CA, USA; UFC fighter Matt Hughes speaks following UFC 117 at the Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports Dec 5, 2014; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Former UFC champion Matt Hughes looks on prior to the UFC 181 weigh-ins at Mandalay Bay Events Center. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Dec 5, 2014; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Former UFC champion Matt Hughes looks on prior to the UFC 181 weigh-ins at Mandalay Bay Events Center. 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/BWkxrCByaCiR6rPjWEsrYf/265469", customAnalytics: true, title: "Matt Hughes", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured, Featured Videos, News, UFC

Boxing broadcaster Al Bernstein discusses Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor intrigue

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5537640888001
Filed under: News, UFC

In the pantheon of great boxing journalists, Al Bernstein is up there with the best of them.

He’s called so many big fights in a career now in its fourth decade and yet, he’s called nothing quite like what he’ll chronicle when Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor clash in a first-of-its kind cross-combat sports event.

RelatedMayweather-McGregor call will culminate Dan Hardy's transition away from UFC punk rock bandit

“This is an intriguing … probably one of the most intriguing situations that I’ve ever been in in 35 years of broadcasting,” Bernstein, who will be ringside for Showtime Boxing, told MMAjunkie Radio. “Because this match is way different than anything obviously. Part of the intrigue of it to me is normally in boxing or MMA when promoters say, ‘Oh, we have a match. We’re pretty sure the public is going to be interested in this. Let’s put it out there and promote it.’ This fight kind of started the reverse.

“This fight started because people seem to want to see it. The fighters themselves stoked the flames. People stoked the flames. And whatever people think of this match and the veracity of it, at the of the day it’s happening because people seem to want to see it.”

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

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 bout will be McGregor’s first as a professional boxer.

The fact that a 49-0 boxing legend is fighting an 0-0 boxing novice in a boxing match has garnered many critics who believe the event is nothing more than a money grab by everyone involved. That, Bernstein said, has presented a challenge in how he approaches preparation to call the fight.

He’s spent little time covering MMA but has done his homework on McGregor and talked “with many MMA experts (about) him and, of course, watched video.” Fight-hype madness aside, Bernstein is approaching the call like any other big boxing match.

“It will be different because of the nature of it,” Bernstein said, “but I don’t feel like we’ll be calling anything other than a boxing match, because that is what they’re doing.”

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

How does Bernstein feel about McGregor’s chances at pulling off the upset over Mayweather?

“At the end of the day this fight boils down to a couple of things,” Bernstein said. “(McGregor is) physically bigger and stronger. If he can find some way within the limits of the rules – and maybe just barely within the limits of the rules – to be that kind of a fighter (to rough up Mayweather) … can Conor McGregor find a way to use his physicality? It would be helpful.”

To hear more from Bernstein, 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.

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.

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/265446", 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: News, UFC

Trading Shots: A snippet of McGregor-Malignaggi sparring, an avalanche of speculation

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

A snippet of sparring footage reignited interest and debate surrounding the Aug. 26 boxing match between UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor and pound-for-pound boxing great Floyd Mayweather. But is it all just hype and edits in the end? MMAjunkie columnist Ben Fowlkes and retired UFC and WEC fighter Danny Downes discuss.

Fowlkes: Let me set a scene for you, Danny. It’s Friday night. I’m relaxing with a glass of port (Kokanee) in my study (garage), and my phone buzzes. It’s an email from the UFC. Subject line: “Conor McGregor vs. Paulie Malignaggi sparring footage.”

So naturally, I open this email and click the link so fast that I nearly break my thumb. Can you blame me? All week the headlines have been dominated by talk of what supposedly happened in this sparring session, and now we’re finally going to the videotape. The magic eye don’t lie, Danny.

Except when I click the link I get 10 seconds of sparring footage, and there’s clearly at least one edit in there. What I see is Malignaggi eating a legitimately stiff left hand from McGregor. Then there’s a cut in the video. Then I see Malignaggi going down while McGregor yanks on his head.

Malignaggi is not pleased by this turn of events. He feels like the UFC spliced together some footage to make McGregor look good at his expense. And to some extent, I’d say it worked. McGregor managed to look pretty good against a former two-division world champ. But are we just watching some carefully edited wolf tickets here? And if so, does it matter?

Downes: What you’re seeing is a little bit of panic. For all the hype surrounding Mayweather vs. McGregor, the closer we get to the actual fight date, people don’t seem that interested. Sure talking heads on ESPN or FOX Sports keep yapping about it, but now it’s football season. Tickets aren’t flying off the shelf as anticipated, so they have to spice things up.

What are the two biggest complaints about this carnival fight? 1) Conor McGregor has no chance, and 2) It’ll be a boring 12-round decision. To achieve the numbers the promoters want, you need a lot of casual fans to press the “buy” button. And those same exact people still remember the sting from Mayweather vs. Pacquiao.

How do you combat these problems? You have Mayweather go on ESPN and say that Conor McGregor has the edge “on paper” while admitting that he’s lost a step. Mayweather isn’t known for being the most humble fighter on Earth, so when he criticizes himself, it really means something. What people fail to realize is that Mayweather likes money more than he likes compliments. If he has to call himself old to increase the buy rate, he’ll do it.

What I think the sparring footage was a direct response to, though, was the media day workout. Let’s just say that McGregor looked less than stellar on the heavy bag. There are people who believe “Mystic Mac” is out there playing three-dimensional chess and planning 20 moves ahead, but the average person watches the workout and thinks, “Welp, this is going to be a blowout.” Look at how the betting lines have moved in recent days.

The carnival was in desperate need of some fresh blood, and voila, some edited sparring footage drops. I wouldn’t call this wolf tickets, because that suggests some large, coherent strategy. I think the powers at be are nervous that their cash cow may not be as profitable as they’d hoped.

Then again, maybe I’m selling all the parties involved short. This is still going to make a boatload (I believe that’s a metric measurement) of money, isn’t it? Is the Mayweather-McGregor train running at full speed, or is it struggling just to reach the station?

Fowlkes: I have to admit that I’m impressed with how all sides have continually found new and innovative ways to keep the fight constantly in the news as the date draws nearer. After the borderline embarrassing media tour, there seemed to be a swift backlash from a lot of mainstream forces. You had people essentially predicting cultural disaster, and not in the fun way.

This required a response, but the problem was that the media tour had already ratcheted up the personal animosity meter as far as it would go. It wasn’t enough to have these two guys just keep calling each other names. What followed was this beef with Malignaggi, which might have been the best thing to happen to the Mayweather-McGregor fight.

That’s because, when this all started, McGregor’s boxing skills were an unknown. As in, we didn’t know if he really had any, because he’s never had a boxing match. There was sparring footage even before this (remember Chris van Heerden, who also complained of edited video before releasing the raw footage himself?) but it wasn’t much to go on. And how could a guy with no boxing matches beat the best boxer around?

But now the hype machine has managed to turn the lack of information into a feature rather than a bug. When there’s so little McGregor boxing footage out there, a 10-second sparring clip is bound to get a ton of attention.

You might very well ask why the UFC didn’t release video of the whole round, but the truth is you already know why. It’s because the unknown is what’s helping to sell this fight. If we don’t know whether or not McGregor can really box, then we have to at least allow for the possibility that he might be a preternatural boxing genius.

But the news cycle is such that even this will only carry you so far. There are still two weeks to go until this fight. The question I can’t help but ask myself is, what’s coming next?

Downes: You may be on the edge of your seat asking that, but none of it makes you more likely to buy the actual fight. The drama may be fun and give people something to talk about while the UFC takes a hiatus, but it’s all sizzle and no steak.

At the end of the day, the main selling point of this fight is “anything can happen!” As an MMA fan, it’s a familiar refrain. Remember Daniel Cormier vs. Patrick Cummins? A complete mismatch sold on the premise that anything could happen. Cummins beat Cormier one time at wrestling practice. Let’s make a No. 1 contender fight! How did that work out?

Maybe a better example is Jon Jones vs. Chael Sonnen. Any serious person knew Sonnen had no chance of beating Jones. It was a complete mismatch, but Sonnen talked a good game and he had some quality one-liners to deliver. Fans may have been entertained in the buildup, but they didn’t want to watch the actual fight. The circus fight barely did better than Jones vs. Machida at UFC 140.

After months of hype and discussion, everyone involved is starting to realize what we knew from the beginning – there’s no substance here. Perhaps they thought they’d find a storyline better than “these guys like money” along the way, but it hasn’t come to fruition. So they’re going to stick with what got them there in the first place, and that’s gimmicks. This week it was a carefully edited sparring video, maybe next week Ido Portal shows up with his pool noodles.

There are a lot of people who want to watch this fight. That’s fine. I’m not in the business of telling people how to spend their money. But don’t pretend for a minute that you want to watch the fight out of some serious consideration for the sporting aspect of it. That’s what these videos are trying to sell, and I’m not buying it.

Ben Fowlkes is MMAjunkie and USA TODAY’s MMA columnist. Danny Downes, a retired UFC and WEC fighter, is an MMAjunkie contributor who has also written for UFC.com and UFC 360. Follow them on twitter at @benfowlkesMMA and @dannyboydownes.

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. 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/68dBFQsn94fMkuPbDjykuH/265377", customAnalytics: true, title: "Conor McGregor media workout before Floyd Ma...", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Mayweather-McGregor call will culminate Dan Hardy's transition away from UFC punk rock bandit

Following an exhaustive 11 consecutive weeks of UFC events, Dan Hardy had set aside August for some long overdue upkeep on his Leicestershire home in the English midlands.

Living with his wife Lacey in what was originally a church house for the past four years, Hardy is yet to still fully unpack all the belongings that returned with him from Las Vegas after his UFC career was cruelly cut short by a heart condition known as Wolff–Parkinson–White syndrome. But those August plans for refining his residence were immediately put on hold when the UFC color commentator and analyst received an unexpected phone call from an equally unlikely source.

It was media conglomerate Sky Sports, and they had called to offer Hardy the position of co-commentator from their pay-preview broadcast of the boxing match between UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and the 49-0, five-division kingpin Floyd Mayweather.

Hardy gratefully accepted the role, which will see him joined in the commentary booth by British former four-time boxing world champion Carl Froch. Considering the 35-year-old intended to watch the historic bout on the sofa with his dog, it’s certainly been quite the turn of events.

Dan Hardy interviews Jack Hermansson at UFC Fight Night 109.

“I was very surprised,” Hardy told MMAjunkie. “It’s nice that the space between the UFC and Sky has closed a bit. I have a lot of respect for Sky, not necessarily for reaching out to me, but for reaching out to anybody in the MMA community to try and give some balance to this commentary.

“This is such an unprecedented event, and it wouldn’t really do it justice just to have boxing commentators there because there are so many things Conor brings to the table, and there are so many things worth knowing about his MMA career that nobody in the boxing world is really touching on.”

Since his transition from fighter to media member, Hardy has garnered a reputation as one of the most canny, insightful analysts in the sport, and he hopes to bring those observational skills to bear over the coming weeks. Indeed, Hardy is palpably determined to offer a point of view he believes to have been sorely lacking to date in the conversation surrounding Mayweather and McGregor.

“I just don’t think that anybody is really putting a logical argument forward for Conor,” Hardy said. “I’ve spoken about Brendan Schaub, who is Conor’s biggest fan, but he’s not really putting anything logical together.

“Nobody else is either, and I feel kind of sad for Conor because he has redefined the sport of MMA in just four years. Why should we count him out now? That’s my motivation, to try and give everybody a fair shout. I’m not there to tell people who will win; I’m there to explain that either fighter can win – and how.”

RelatedFloyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor will be frustrating to watch, Dan Hardy explains

Hardy was interviewed via Skype by Sky Sports when news of the contest between Mayweather and McGregor was first announced, but there was little evidence to suggest that he’d be hearing from them again any time soon.

BT Sport has been the UFC’s broadcast partner in the U.K. and Ireland since 2013, but the company was outbid by Sky for the PPV rights of the showdown at T-Mobile Arena. Hardy believes Sky enlisted his services after quickly discerning just how much of their potential success in this venture depends on the MMA fanbase.

“I’m not sure Sky realized how much of an impact the MMA community is going to have on their pay-per-view sales,” Hardy said. “Once they did, they probably thought it worth having a voice familiar to those fans and decided to give me a shout. I’m just thankful to Sky and the UFC for putting me in this position.

“I certainly feel very privileged to be stepping into that role, but just the fact that Sky have reached out to anyone is a positive step forward for MMA and the UFC.”

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Former UFC title challenger Sara McMann joins Team Alpha Male

The stable of talent at Team Alpha Male continues to grow with the addition of UFC women’s bantamweight contender Sara McMann.

McMann (11-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) has officially joined the team in Sacramento, Calif., ahead of her scheduled bout with Ketlen Vieira (8-0 MMA. 2-0 UFC) at UFC 215, which takes place Sept. 9 at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, with the main card on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

The full-time move to Team Alpha Male has been pending for several weeks, now it’s official (via Instagram):

McMann, No. 9 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA women’s bantamweight rankings, unsuccessfully challenged then-champion Ronda Rousey for the title at UFC 170 in February 2014. She’s dropped fights to Miesha Tate and current champion Amanda Nunes since, but otherwise has overwhelmed her competition.

The 36-year-old is currently riding a three-fight winning streak including consecutive arm-triangle submission wins against Alexis Davis and Gina Mazany. She will attempt to push her winning streak to four against the undefeated Vieira.

For more on UFC 215, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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

Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) fights Gina Mazany (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) fights Gina Mazany (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) fights Gina Mazany (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) fights Gina Mazany (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) fights Gina Mazany (blue gloves) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) reacts with Gina Mazany (blue gloves) after their fight during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports Feb 19, 2017; Halifax, NS, Canada; Sara McMann (red gloves) reacts after defeating Gina Mazany (not pictured) during UFC Fight Night at Scotiabank Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-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/2pigUNTdCfJxzLYAkXBFkc/265370", customAnalytics: true, title: "McMann def. Mazany", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Blue Corner, Featured Videos, News, UFC

Jonathan Wilson drops to middleweight, meets newcomer Oskar Piechota at UFC Fight Night 118

The UFC’s October return to Poland is beginning to take shape with the addition of a middleweight bout between Jonathan Wilson and Oskar Piechota.

UFC officials have not formally announced the matchup, but Wilson (7-2 MMA, 1-2 UFC) revealed on social media that he’s been booked against Piechota (9-0-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) at UFC Fight Night 118:

UFC Fight Night 118 takes place Oct. 21 at Ergo Arena in Gdansk, Poland. The event streams on UFC Fight Pass, though the bout order hasn’t been finalized.

Wilson hasn’t seen action since UFC Fight Night 96 in October where he dropped a unanimous decision to Ion Cutelaba. It marked his second consecutive defeat after starting his career 7-0 and apparently prompted “Johnny Bravo” to change weight classes.

Piechota, meanwhile, becomes the latest Polish fighter to join the UFC roster. He’s unbeaten through 10 career fights and has managed to stop his opponent inside the distance in each of his wins. Piechota has already earned two knockout wins this year, both coming in a combined fight time of 69 seconds.

The latest UFC Fight Night 118 card now includes:

  • Ramazan Emeev vs. Trevor Smith
  • Jan Blachowicz vs. Devin Clark
  • Oskar Piechota vs. Jonathan Wilson

For more on UFC Fight Night 118, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.


Filed under: News, UFC

GoFundMe launched for UFC/WEC veteran Javier Vazquez after colon cancer diagnosis

Former UFC and WEC fighter Javier Vazquez, 40, is in need of financial support after being diagnosed with colon cancer.

Vazquez (16-5 MMA, 1-0 UFC) last competed in MMA in June 2011, earning a unanimous-decision win over “The Ultimate Fighter 2” winner Joe Stevenson. The UFC, WEC, EliteXC and King of the Cage veteran recently underwent surgery to have a tumor removed and is now facing a regimen of chemotherapy.

One of Vazquez’s, friends recently launched a GoFundMe page to help raise money for medical care, establishing a goal of $35,000.

The exact details of Vazquez’s situation were revealed in the GoFundMe description.

Professor Javier Vazquez was recently diagnosed with colon cancer. A stage 3 tumor was removed. He is extremely ill and experiencing a number of life obstacles on top of embarking on 6 months of chemotherapy.

Once his immune system is up for the task, he will go through 6 grueling months of chemo in CA. Funds will be needed immediately. These funds will not only help cover the expenses of his medical treatments, but also assist in any additional expenses as he has decided to step away from his Jiu-Jitsu academy to focus on his health and recent divorce battle.

We also ask for prayers for Professor Javier, his two kids, and his family in this trying time. Messages are welcome as well. Professor Javier’s current situation is very dire. Your donations are so greatly appreciated.

To donate to Vazquez’s cause, visit the GoFundMe page.

For more on the upcoming MMA schedule, 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 Videos, News, UFC

Is Tito Ortiz planning to come out of retirement after latest neck surgery?

Tito Ortiz is more than six months into his latest retirement, but it appears the former UFC light heavyweight champion could again be on the comeback trail.

Ortiz (19-12-1 MMA, 3-1 BMMA), a UFC Hall of Famer, retired from competition earlier this year after a first-round submission of Chael Sonnen at Bellator 170 in January. He’s since claimed to be content with his decision but now is hinting at the desire to compete again.

Ortiz recently underwent a surgery on his neck which apparently required multiple discs to be replaced. He’s recovering quickly, though, he said, and is teasing a rematch with Sonnen, who has blasted him with numerous negative comments since their first encounter (via Instagram):

Ortiz is coming off a stretch of three victories in four fights since he joined the Bellator roster in May 2014. He’s still officially retired, but the 42-year-old has kept busy of late by appearing in the corner of UFC women’s featherweight champion Cristiane Justino for her title-winning victory at UFC 214 this past month.

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


Filed under: Bellator, News, UFC

Not loving Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor odds? Prop bets might be the way to go

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid4621179066001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAABvaL8JE~,ufBHq_I6FnxR-PQW_F3sm5QdUbP7D6E9&bctid=5513192455001
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

(This is the third 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 and Part 2.)

You can’t escape the media storm. If you’ve turned on a TV, opened a laptop, or scrolled down on your tablet or phone, you’ve been bombarded by Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor. You’ve been inundated with a 24/7 media flood of analysis, speculation, and news, no matter how trivial (Headline: Dave Chappelle explains why he won’t be attending…). You’ve seen clips of press conferences featuring a tatted-up Irishman in three-piece suits and furs wagging his finger at a smack-talking American draped in his vanity brand of sportswear and sunglasses inside. All this hullabaloo leading up to what most oddsmakers believe is a farcical mismatch between combatants from two wildly different sports trying to fit an octagon into a square.

Compared to the hype, the fight itself is almost an afterthought.

RelatedA $150,000 bet on Conor McGregor? Betting on his Floyd Mayweather fight is getting wacky

The result of the main event is also something of a sideshow for casinos and gambling websites. Most gambling establishments make their big money on casual bettors throwing a few bucks on the line. But the long odds favoring Mayweather are bound to scare away big casual bets on McGregor while simultaneously taking the sport out of betting on the boxer. So to stir up action and attract the amateur gamblers, oddsmakers are loading up on smaller, proposition bets.

“Prop bets are profitable if you book it right,” MGM Resorts Vice President of Race and Sports Jay Rood told MMAjunkie. “An event like this presents a ton of wagering opportunities.”

Rood says bettors will be looking for an edge betting for Mayweather winning by knockout instead of decision. They can try to predict which round and minute McGregor goes down in, or, if they’re game, when he’ll spring the upset. Maybe they just hope the MMA fighter can go the distance. They can also be the under/over on the scorecards. Skeptics of the whole endeavor can even bet on whether or not the fight will actually happen.

When it comes to prop bets, clandestine casinos are at a bit of an advantage. Due to strict oversight by the gaming commissions, brick-and-mortar operations have to be careful to only pick scenarios that are concrete and can be defended in front of the gaming board. They must steer clear of gaming disputes.

RelatedWant to wager more on Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor fight? Check out these prop bets

Meanwhile, the offshore gambling sites can sit back, put their feet up, and create odds on pretty much anything they can think of.

“Off-shores are able to be creative as they possibly can to capitalize on the traditional market,” says Todd Fuhrman, gaming insider for Fox Sports and CBS. “The only thing that limits your ability to take bets is your creativity.”

Even the ring itself is not a boundary. How many pay-per-view buys will the fight attract? Will McGregor walk out to his “Billionaire Strut” theme music? Will the WBC award the so-called “Diamond Belt” to the winner? And several sites are moving past fight night and focusing on the promotion.

“The true event is the promotion,” Diamond Sportsbook odds consultant Anthony Albanese said. “It’s all about entertainment value. We have two great entertainers at these press conferences — that’s where they’re more competitive.”

Oddsmaker.com handicapped these scenarios:

  • Will Conor McGregor throw an object at Floyd Mayweather during the press conference?
  • Who will use the f-word first? (McGregor -625)
  • Will Conor McGregor or Floyd Mayweather storm out of the press conference?
  • Will either Conor McGregor or Floyd Mayweather be knocked out during the press conference?

“With prop bets, you’re always looking for storylines,” Bookmaker.eu’s Scott Cooley said. “There are storylines everywhere with these two characters.”

So far, Cooley and his cohorts have taken bets on whether or not either fighter will test positive for performance-enhancing drugs or whether or not McGregor brings up Mayweather’s domestic assault charge on social media. Getting too creative can be dicey, but Cooley says it’s usually worth the risk to the bookmaker. After all, stories about the wild prop bets (like this one) can quickly get sucked up and blown out of the publicity hurricane that has formed around the eye of this pseudo-event.

“Those types of bets are difficult because everyone has social media,” says Cooley. “The fighters could see that and decide to affect the outcome. Sharp players usually always win on those sorts of bets, but that’s why we set low limits. Even if we lose a few thousand here and there, it gets us the exposure we’re looking for. It’s a good marketing tool. That’s why we try to be the first one’s out there with these crazy bets.”

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/265350", customAnalytics: true, title: "Floyd Mayweather media workout", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
Filed under: Featured, News, UFC

Ex-champ dos Anjos on possible meeting with champ Woodley: 'I won't let him feel comfortable'

It took Rafael dos Anjos 18 fights and almost seven years to earn his first shot at a UFC belt.

The wait, however, paid off. After dominantly upsetting Anthony Pettis, dos Anjos got a taste of gold. Now, as he makes his way through a whole new division at 170 pounds, the former lightweight titleholder is confident he can do it again. Only this time, a little – or maybe a lot – faster.

“Now, as an ex-champ, I think the path is shorter,” dos Anjos told MMAjunkie. “Demian (Maia) just had his shot at the belt and couldn’t get it. Tyron Woodley defended it. (Donald) Cerrone’s fight with (ex-champ) Robbie Lawler – I thought Cerrone won, but it was tough. In my opinion, Lawler wasn’t convincing, so I think that fight removed him from a possible title rematch. (Jorge) Masvidal lost to Demian.

“Stephen Thompson will probably fight Masvidal and had two title fights already. I’m behind in the rankings, but the path is kind of open. I think with a win over (Neil) Magny, considering I’m an ex-champ, I think I’m pretty close. I’m not too far.”

But first things first. Dos Anjos (26-9 MMA, 15-7 UFC) is set to continue his welterweight path next month, at UFC 215, when he meets Magny (19-5 MMA, 12-4 UFC) at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It will be the Brazilian ex-champ’s second octagon go as a 170-pounder, after a June trip to Singapore resulted in an unanimous-decision win over Tarec Saffiedine.

It may be early in his 170-pound walk, but dos Anjos sees a possible win over the ranked, battle-tested Magny as a big boost in an overall stacked division. And while his focus is now on that, he has already started planting some seeds for the not-so-distant future.

A few days ago, for instance, he took to Twitter to make sure to let champion Tyron Woodley – then fresh off his UFC 214 title defense against Demian Maia – aware of his intentions. The low-key callout, however, doesn’t mean that dos Anjos doesn’t respect him.

In fact, dos Anjos thinks Woodley is great fighter. But dos Anjos also believes he has what it takes to throw the champ off his game.

“He has that game of circling around, of not wanting to take risks,” dos Anjos said. “With me, he’s going to be at risk. I won’t let him feel comfortable. I think in his past two fights, he wasn’t in jeopardy. Stephen Thompson fought very technically and strategically. Not that I won’t use strategy and technique, but I have this (stronger) pace.

“I’ll push the pace and he’ll have to go to work. I won’t let him circle around – he’ll take me down, I’ll take him down, the fight will be a scramble. I’ll push his pace. And I think that’s when I’ll get the better of him.”

Dos Anjos pauses for a second, and then adds with a laugh.

“I think after my fight with him, people might even buy his pay-per-view.”

‘Lose one more, and everyone starts calling for your retirement’

Regardless of whom he’ll have to beat to get there, dos Anjos has a few reasons to believe he can be champion again.

First of all, despite his extensive octagon experience, dos Anjos is only 32 and sees a lot of fighting ahead of him, still. That, in turn, is helped by the fact that, after years of the depleting cut down to 155 pounds, he’s found renewed energy – as well as physical and emotional relief – from his new weight status.

And there’s also the fact that, despite a two-fight skid to start his UFC run – and some tough setbacks after them – he’s made it there once.

“I tasted it, and I know how hard it is to get there,” dos Anjos said. “I know I can do it. I know I can do it again. I have it what it takes.”

From the start, dos Anjos has been clear about how comfortable he was with the decision to move up. While it was something he’d been thinking about even while he still held the belt, the definitive call came after an ill-fated UFC Fight Night 98 meeting with Tony Ferguson – which also meant a second straight loss after the title-costing TKO to now-also-ex-champ Eddie Alvarez.

After so many years of repeating the process of dehydrating his body and exposing his head to trauma the day after, dos Anjos decided it was time to put himself – and his health – first.

“I thought, ‘I’m going to end up having a problem here,'” dos Anjos said. “I heard a lot (of criticism). ‘Oh, those guys are huge.’ So what? I don’t care. I train with welterweights everyday. I train well with all them. I’ll also be stronger, healthier and my quality of life will improve. That’s what matters.”

Dos Anjos is totally at peace with the fresh start. Not only has his training improved, but even his family life has been positively impacted by what’s ultimately a much less grueling day-to-day. But, looking back, he admits it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows when he walked into the octagon for his 170-pound debut.

“I’m not going to lie, I felt very pressured for that last fight,” dos Anjos said. “I think I even got a little more tired than usual. I really pushed the pace of the fight, but I did get more tired because I was a little nervous. I lost the belt – and then, in my return fight, I lost. I switched divisions. You know how it goes – lose one more and everyone starts calling for your retirement. And I know I still have a lot to do.

“I was nervous. I was confident, but anxious. Thankfully, it all worked out. I’m on my way. I saw that the move to welterweight (worked). Although I’d fought in this division before the UFC, I was worried about the strength of the opponents. But I saw that, though the guys are stronger, I’m stronger too. The pressure is off.”

The keys to Neil Magny

Despite the confidence that he can make his way back to the top again, dos Anjos knows that he has a tough first step ahead, and that is Magny, who’ll return after a more than eight-month layoff – the longest of the 30-year-old fighter’s remarkably active UFC run.

Currently ranked No. 10 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA welterweight rankings, Magny comes off a decision win over ex-champ Johny Hendricks. In his past 13 fights, he’s only lost twice – falling victim to Lorenz Larkin’s heavy blows and Maia’s well-known grappling prowess.

“He’s a good fighter,” dos Anjos analyzed. “But he doesn’t have any specialties. He’s good at everything, but he’s not excellent at anything.”

While he believes that Magny does have a good ground game, dos Anjos also thinks he may be too willing to accept it. Which, for him, has meant falling into the traps of two grappling experts – other than Maia, Magny was also finished by jiu-jitsu ace Sergio Moraes.

With that in mind, dos Anjos thinks putting his black belt skills to use may  end up being a path to victory. But it’s not the only one.

“I’m going to do my usual game,” dos Anjos said. “I’m going to move forward. He has a good gas tank – he can put on a solid pace for 15 minutes. I think it will be a great fight. I’ll push the pace, too. The ground game is one way to go, but I’ll try to work my striking, too, and try to hurt him a little bit there. And, if it goes to the ground, I’ll settle it there.

“He’s long, but he doesn’t use his reach very well, from what I’ve seen. He fights with his arms closer to his body and he moves forward, chasing the fight. I like fighting taller, lankier guys like Nate Diaz, or Cerrone. I like it. Even Tarec Saffediene.”

For more on UFC 215, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

Jul 7, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos moves in with a kick against Eddie Alvarez during UFC Fight Night at MGM Grand Graden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports Jul 7, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos defends against Eddie Alvarez during UFC Fight Night at MGM Grand Graden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports Jul 7, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos moves in with a hit against Eddie Alvarez during UFC Fight Night at MGM Grand Graden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joshua Dahl-USA TODAY Sports December 19, 2015; Orlando, FL, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos celebrates his victory against Donald Cerrone following UFC Fight Night at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports December 19, 2015; Orlando, FL, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos is declared the winner by technical knockout victory against Donald Cerrone during UFC Fight Night at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports December 19, 2015; Orlando, FL, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos moves in with punches against Donald Cerrone during UFC Fight Night at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports December 19, 2015; Orlando, FL, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos moves in with punches against Donald Cerrone during UFC Fight Night at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports December 19, 2015; Orlando, FL, USA; Rafael Dos Anjos before fighting against Donald Cerrone during UFC Fight Night at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports Jul 31, 2015; Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil; Rafael dos Anjos interacts with fans during a Q&A session before weigh-ins for UFC 190 at HSBC Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports May 23, 2015; Las Vegas, NV, USA; UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos attends the Anthony Johnson (not pictured) and Daniel Cormier (not pictured) light heavyweight championship bout during UFC 187 at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Cormier won via third round TKO. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Rafael dos Anjos Filho holds the lightweight title belt for his father Rafael dos Anjos (blue) after defeating Anthony Pettis (red) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Rafael dos Anjos (blue) celebrates with this family and team after defeating Anthony Pettis (red) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Rafael dos Anjos (blue) reacts after defeating Anthony Pettis (red) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Anthony Pettis (red) fights Rafael dos Anjos (blue) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Anthony Pettis (red) fights Rafael dos Anjos (blue) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 14, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Anthony Pettis (red) fights Rafael dos Anjos (blue) in the lightweight title bout during UFC 185 at American Airlines Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports Mar 13, 2015; Dallas, TX, USA; Announcer Joe Rogan invterviews Rafael dos Anjos during weigh-ins for UFC 185 at Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports December 13, 2014; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Rafael dos Anjos reacts following his fight against Nate Diaz during UFC Fight Night at US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-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/s5exGuZKRFPc4iyo2CRwVQ/265288", customAnalytics: true, title: "Rafael dos Anjos", feedsrc: 2 } );(typeof _usdpgw == "undefined") ? _usdpgw = new _usdpGalleryWall(window._usmgOptions) : _usdpgw.start();
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