Local fighters weigh in on Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather
The MMA schedule in the Ohio Valley is bare this weekend (for good reason), but that doesn’t mean that we take a break. While we are mostly a MMA site, there’s no way we can ignore the biggest combat sports event of all time. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t put some local flavor on our Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather coverage.
To do so, we decided to reach out to some of the most respected veterans of combat sports in our area. This includes fighters, promoters, and coaches. Their thoughts on The Fight of the Century are below.
Chris Curtis (15-5 MMA, 2-0 boxing):
“LOL I can’t believe this fight was actually approved. Even worse there are So many people willing to pay money to see it. There is nothing about McGregor that Floyd hasn’t dealt with on a better scale. This is only going to end in one of two ways. With FMJ embarrassing Conor or a DQ.”
Curtis is the CES MMA welterweight champion and has an upcoming bout where he will face Peter Grajcar for the welterweight title at Fight Night: Medicine Hat 4 on Sept. 9 in Canada.
Muhammad Abdullah (9-3 MMA, 2-0-1 boxing):
“The first thought that comes to my head is the movie great white hype!
Although a fight is a fight , I think it’s its bad for boxing and big for mma. Reason being is because if Connor even makes it competitive it makes mma look good and boxing look terrible. It’s a money fiight and a spectacle. As far as it being competitive I don’t really see it being that at all. I compete in both and it’s just 2 completely different worlds. People are giving Connor this one punch chance when in reality you have to ask the question. How many times has Connor just hit someone one time and they been lights out? Boxing has a 10 count so even if he does hurt Floyd he will have a chance to regain his composure. I don’t see it being competitive past the 1st 3 rounds.”
Abdullah recently won the Colosseum Combat middleweight title, and he’ll face Robert Gidron for the Motor City Cage Night title on Friday in Michigan.
Travis Davis (4-1 MMA, 2-0 boxing):
“I think this fight is a win/win for Conor and a lose/lose for Mayweather. McGregor goes out and tries to finish in the first 4 rounds like he’s predicted. If he does that, I think he’ll gas. If it makes it pass 6 rounds, then Mayweather comes back with flurry after flurry and finishes the fight. A couple of things play in the factor of Conor knocking him out: southpaw, age, power and timing. Is Floyd slowing down?!? I guess we’ll see.
I recently just started boxing and I can tell you that you gas faster in boxing than MMA if you’re throwing power looking for that finish. Gloves get heavy fast and your feet feel like bricks. In MMA you have plenty of places to rest on the cage, ground or in space using your kick to keep the distance; boxing not so much. If you’re not punching or moving you’re probably getting punched or moved. You have to be calm when in danger in boxing and catch your breath inside or in space. I love the fight, but with no boxing experience other than his camp and fighting well one of the best boxers to ever compete I’d say Mayweather is the favorite for a reason although I’m a McGregor fan. I mean he’s exciting, talks trash well, backs it up, and always comes looking for the finish.”
Davis recently won his second boxing bout this past weekend, and he plans to return to MMA on Oct. 7 in Columbus, Ohio.
Matt Leyshock (promoter):
“They’re calling this the”safest bet” in Las Vegas history. If I had to place an actual bet, I would guess that MacGregor will have some surprisingly good moments but Floyd should eventually take control and win a wide but hard to argue decision.
This is the safest bet in my opinion.”
Leyshock is the promoter for Pinnacle FC and Pinnacle Boxing Championships. He also trains professional and amateur boxers.
Luke Zachrich (14-4 MMA, 3-0 boxing):
Zachrich is retired as a fighter, but he still owns and operates Ronin Training Center in Columbus, Ohio.
Matt Montalvo (7-12 MMA, 0-2-1 boxing):
“If this were MMA I would pick Conor all day. But this is boxing and he’s stepping up to a world class boxer. I predict Mayweather with a tko stoppage in less than 7 rounds. This is Floyd’s fight to win. Although anything could happen and there is a lot of hype, I don’t think it will go the way most MMA fans think it will go.”
Montalvo is retired as a fighter, but he is now promoting. His New League Fights promotion will host its biggest event to date on Oct. 28 in Montpelier, Ohio.
Gregg Rudolph (1-0 amateur MMA, 3-0 boxing):
“We all know Conor is a very talented fighter, he is very awkward and long for his size. He has some power and lots of skill, is it enough to take out 1 of the best boxers of all time? I don’t think so! All of Conor’s fights that have went the distance he has been extremely “gassed”, he is a 4 round fighter, Floyd on the other hand is a 12 round fighter! If Conor has any chance of winning this fight he will have to hurt him in the first 3 rounds, his awkwardness may be enough to land a few hard shots, but Floyd is the master of defense. I see him wearing Conor down after the 4th round and just taking control of the fight. I have fought both mixed martial arts and pro boxing; in MMA you have a chance to recover and rest on your opponent, in boxing you don’t. You’re on your feet and if you try to rest on your opponent the ref immediately steps in and gets you back to fighting. My prediction is Conor will put up a surprisingly competitive 4-5 rounds then will fall flat and the experience and flawless technique of a pro boxer will overwhelm him and he will either be stopped in the late rounds or go the distance but will be devastatingly outscored on the score cards! I don’t think Floyd has enough power to take him out now, but I hope he does! Smart business move for Conor but he should stay where he belongs, in the cage! TMT all the way baby.”
Rudolph moved his pro boxing record to 3-0 with a knockout win in June.
Joe Garcia (7-4 amateur MMA):
“You’ve got one side that says Conor’s boxing is garbage and another that says he can smash Floyd. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Conor’s boxing isn’t bad. It’s actually pretty good. But “pretty good” is not the same as “elite”. There’s levels to this just like anything else. Just because you’re “pretty good” at basketball doesn’t mean you challenge LeBron to a game of one on one. Zab Judah was a southpaw with a hard counter left , Marcos Maidana was “awkward” , De la Hoya was tall, Canelo was young. We’ve seen Floyd deal with all these “weapons” before and prevail. Conor is nothing special. Floyd wins a typical Mayweather unanimous decision.”
Garcia recently won the New League Fights light heavyweight title, and he plans on turning pro in both boxing and MMA in the near future. Check out his website GarciaMMA.com.
Devonte Smith (5-1 MMA):
“So at first I thought Floyd would win hands down, but they are doing all this iffy stuff with gloves to make it more of a fight for McGregor which is stupid. I don’t know why Floyd cares what people think; like he said the fans can’t fight for you so why put yourself in danger. But I still hope Floyd wins, because boxing and MMA are two different sports! I might think about not fighting anymore if Floyd loses.”
Smith recently picked up his fifth pro win over Damonte Robinson.
“The best part of the fight of the century is already over. The hype for Mayweather/McGregor will be far more entertaining then the fight itself. McGregor will be awkward in the ring and money will be himself. Only true fans of both sports will be entertained. Mayweather by unanimous decision.”
Denz is a retired pro fighter and the host of Caveman’s Corner podcast. Check out the latest episode here.
Bob Meese (trainer):
“McGregor should learn how to throw a proper jab or Mayweather is going to land all lead rights all through the fight! Mac’s only chance to win is to throw unorthodox punches and make it ugly.”
Meese is the uncle of UFC bantamweight champion Cody Garbrandt and is a noted MMA striking coach. He was also a former Olympic alternate boxer.
Adam Townsend (17-4 MMA, 2-0 boxing):
“Being someone who’s competed in both professional MMA and Boxing this is the reason I don’t see where Conor stands a chance. I’ve been to a lot of gyms around the country and could compete with anyone I want in standup. I can go to to JCAC in Johnson City and get a 15 piece combo put on me by a 16 year old kid. That’s the major difference I think people don’t see. You’ve got Conor who is a great striker for MMA then you’ve got Floyd who is the greatest boxer of all time. Yeah people say that he has trouble with left handed fighters but you have to understand he’s fought some of the best left handed boxers of all time. Conor has good power in his left hand and will be much bigger. At the end of the day Conor has to hit Floyd. The elite of the elite couldn’t hit Floyd and you exepect a slower MMA fighter to? Conor doesn’t throw combos, he takes half a step back and half a step over.
I see Conor fading really hard after the sixth or seventh round. I don’t see Floyd finishing Conor but I don’t see Conor hitting Floyd. I’m not saying he’s not going to hit him, he’s going to land a punch. Conor won’t land enough punches to matter and won’t win a round. I think it will go to a decision and it will be horrible for boxing. Just an MMA fighter going the distance with the best boxer in the world, it will kill boxing. I think Floyd needs to finish it within two or three rounds and hit him with 10-15 piece combos.
It’s a super fight and I’ll watch it. I see great local fighters here that could be competive with Conor. It will be great for MMA but hurt boxing if Conor wins.”
Adam Towsned last competed in February when he picked up a TKO over Marcus Edwards at LFA 5. We’re not sure if he’s retired or not.
Let us know your thoughts on Mayweather vs. McGregor in the comments.