This one will sting.
There is little doubt that Conor McGregor bossed the Toronto leg of the Mayweather vs. McGregor promotional world tour.
The microphone smack, confronting Showtime’s Stephen “weasel” Espinoza, the call and reply chants, scorching boxing journalists and “You can’t even read!” McGregor brought the fire in T.O.
During it all though, Mayweather planted a seed. Standing an inch away from ‘The Notorious’, he proclaimed:
“One thing we do know, the f**king fans can’t fight for you.”
Although McGregor got a bigger cheer with his ‘Shut the f**k up!’ response, Mayweather’s comments touched a nerve.
Just a week out from the August 26 bout between both men, Mayweather has timed an even bigger insult to perfection. Again, it focuses on an area that McGregor and his followers consider a strength but ‘Money’ has just brutally dismissed it.
After telling Showtime’s ‘All Access’ that he can abso-f**king-lutely knock the Dubliner out, Mayweather trains his sights on McGregor’s training regime. The UFC champion has been out cycling in the Nevada desert, running waist-deep in water tanks and training with movement guru Ido Portal.
Dismissing McGregor’s pre-fight conditioning routines in brutal fashion, Mayweather proclaims:
“He can do all the crazy training he wants. All the water works, the bike-riding, all the stuff he wants…. I can f**king fight, no matter what.”
It is the ultimate, scathing remark – I can fight. Can this guy? Does all McGregor’s efforts mean he can endure body shot after body shot? Is he ring-smart? Is it all a ruse?
When it is all said and done, McGregor’s shoulder rolls, cycles and unique training drills will either transform boxing – as they have done across the UFC since his victories – or he will be mercilessly ripped by an entire sport and hundreds of thousands of fight enthusiasts the world over.
However, it is worth remembering McGregor’s words after he defeated Nate Diaz at UFC 202.
“Doubt me now.”