Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor fight analysis
If Conor McGregor somehow pulls off an upset victory over Floyd Mayweather, it’ll undoubtedly go down as one of the biggest shockers in sports history. A win by McGregor — who has zero professional boxing experience — belongs with the likes of Iceland in last year’s European Cup or Team USA beating Russia in 1980 Winter Olympics.
As soon as the fight was announced for August 26, sportsbooks laid heavy odds in favor of the undefeated Mayweather. Bovada gives McGregor a +400 chance to shock the world, with Mayweather at -600 to prevail.
If McGregor can do the near impossible, it’ll be because he hits Mayweather with a brutal blow, plain and simple. While McGregor is the only UFC fighter to ever hold two championships in two weight divisions simultaneously, he hasn’t boxed since he was 16 — about 13 years ago — when he was an All-Ireland champion at youth level.
To McGregor’s credit, he does have one-punch knockout power — just ask Jose Aldo, who had a decade-long winning streak ended in 13 seconds from a fist from McGregor.
Matter of fact, 18 of McGregor’s 21 wins in MMA have come via knockout. He’s made a career out of ferocious strikes, not chokeholds, and McGregor’s weapon of choice is his left hand. How many times have we seen McGregor feint before landing a big left hook? Too many to count.
However, just connecting any punches on Mayweather will be a tall order. Mayweather is regarded as one of the best defensive fighters to have ever lived. In 49 fights, he’s been knocked out once, well kind of. Way back in 2001 against Carlos Hernandez, Mayweather took a ten-count after having glove issues, but it was far from a real knockout strike.
Furthermore, McGregor’s best-case scenario of landing one devastating punch plays right into Mayweather’s strength. If this fight plays out like nearly ever other in Mayweather’s career, he’ll bait McGregor early. By ducking and dodging a barrage of punches, Mayweather will either tire out or frustrate McGregor. With McGregor worn down or flustered, Mayweather will counter with pin-point precision and win on points alone.
Mayweather’s in-ring style is calm and smart — a polar opposite to his brash and in-your-face attitude outside. Many will call it “boring” but the true boxing purist will appreciate Mayweather’s complete mastery inside the square circle. Mayweather’s speed and guarding ability is the stuff of legends.
At the end of the day, anything can happen in boxing. And we mean anything. Thus, you can’t definitely say McGregor will lose. However, in the world of betting, we can say with some certainty that it most likely won’t happen. Mayweather is the sure-fire pick here.
The true betting value in this bout will be wagering on the over/under and method of victory. Across most sportsbooks, the round total is set at 9.5 rounds. We love the over here.
Most of those who believe Mayweather will win, think it’ll come through knockout. Yes, McGregor is wildly inexperienced and he’ll likely leave himself open at times. But Mayweather is a no-risk fighter. He’ll outbox you with surgical precision and take a decision victory rather than risk himself.
In Mayweather’s last ten matches, he’s won all by decision, sans one — a controversial knockout over Victor Ortiz, who had his hands down before the knockout blow. Add on that he’s 40 years old and hasn’t stepped in a boxing ring in two years, a decision win for Mayweather is the most plausible outcome.
Pick: Mayweather (-600)
Round Total: Over
Method of Victory: Decision