In a closer fight than anticipated, Floyd Mayweather stopped Conor McGregor in the 10th round of their Money Fight.
All the build-up and fanfare of “The Biggest Fight in Combat Sports History” has finally culminated in the T-Mobile Arena, with UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor taking on boxing legend Floyd Mayweather at his own game. From the Paulie Malignaggi saga to Conor’s overwhelming self-belief, the pre-fight happenings have been nothing short of entertaining.
Following the pair of national anthems from Imelda May and Demi Lovato it was finally time for the biggest fight ever to occur. Conor McGregor was the aggressor in round one, throwing constant punches at a defensive-minded Floyd Mayweather. The most notable shot was a clean uppercut that snuck through for McGregor, and the Irishman took round one.
Round two was more of the same. McGregor slipped Floyd’s punches and landed his own at a very consistent rate. The clinch game came into play in the third round, and Conor responded with hammerfists to the back of Mayweather’s head. Of course, that is an illegal move, and the referee warned Conor a few times without consequences. Regardless, the trend continued and Conor continued to get the better of Floyd.
The fourth round is when Floyd Mayweather began to open up. After essentially playing possum for the first nine minutes, it was the greatest boxer of our generation stalking the debutant down, landing shots when he pleased. Conor did have some offense, but it was Floyd who dictated the round.
The momentum swung back in Conor’s direction in the fifth round, in which Floyd tamed his offense and Conor was using the clinch to his advantage. However, Floyd was able to pick his shots well which is valued in boxing’s scoring criteria.
The conditioning difference was clear from the sixth round on. Floyd began to show what’s brought him to his legendary status, and Conor could not keep up. Conor would open up rounds strongly, forcing Mayweather to cover up, but he would be looking up at the clock shortly after attempting to evade Mayweather’s pressure.
McGregor’s unorthodox movements lessened greatly in the later rounds. His reactions slower, his hands held low. Mayweather opened up and started to put more behind his shots and all Conor could do was hope to slip the shots.
The second half of the ninth round is when an upcoming stoppage began to creep into the minds of Conor’s MMA faithful. McGregor was skirting across the ropes, unable to keep Floyd away. The tenth round is when it all came crashing down. Conor McGregor was on the wobbly legs that we saw after Nate Diaz’s fight-changing shot in round two of their first bout. Floyd kept the pressure on and sent McGregor stumbling into the ropes. Mayweather sealed the deal by closing the distance and landing a few punches before the ref had seen enough.
Following the fight, a completely coherent and smiling McGregor wished that the ref had let him fall to allow him to go out on his shield. He also stated that he will return to the UFC. Mayweather gave credit where credit was due and complimented Conor on his angles and his unanticipated skill level. However, the gameplan was to allow Conor to tire himself out early on and it worked to a tee.