It is all over. Undefeated boxing legend Floyd “Money” Mayweather stopped UFC lightweight champion “The Notorious” Conor McGregor in round 10 of their 12-round junior middleweight showdown, and we can all put this fight behind us.
The two met at the center of the ring late Saturday, August 26th at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. After an exciting contest, referee Robert Byrd officially waved the bout off at the 1:05 minute mark of round 10.
While many fans and observers deemed this to be an absolute circus, given that McGregor had never boxed a round professionally in his life and that he was set to take on arguably the sport’s greatest fighter, it didn’t turn out to be quite the mismatch everyone was making it out to be.
In the end, McGregor came into the bout much better than expected and represented mixed martial arts quite well. Surprisingly, the fight was a lot more competitive than first thought. McGregor stood right in front of Mayweather and gave him various angles, which threw Mayweather off his rhythm early on.
However, as great champions tend to do, Mayweather made key adjustments midway into the fight that changed the complexion of the contest completely. From then on, it was the beginning of the end for McGregor who had no experience in dealing with a boxer of this caliber.
Let’s take a look a little deeper at what transpired in what will go down as one of the biggest fights in combat sports history. Today, Evolve Daily shares The 4 Most Interesting Takeaways From Mayweather vs McGregor.
1) McGregor did better than expected
Despite getting stopped in the 10th round, McGregor gave a much better account of himself than many had expected. There were some who predicted McGregor wouldn’t last two rounds in there with Mayweather, but surprisingly enough, McGregor even took some of the first few rounds as the match remained competitive early.
He still looked terribly awkward and off-balance, granted, but he wasn’t as wild as many were thinking he would be. McGregor came into the contest like a true professional, minus a few rabbit punches and shots to the back of the head here and there. Overall, McGregor boxed quite nicely and he does have a future in the sport should he pursue it.
But Mayweather is the best at what he does. He is a master boxer, adept at figuring out his opponent’s weaknesses, sourcing openings, and capitalizing. Mayweather has been a professional for over 21 years, and a world champion for 16 of those years. There was no way he was losing this fight to a guy who had zero professional boxing experience.
2) McGregor just didn’t have the boxing stamina
In the post-fight press conference, McGregor had a chance to face the media and basically broke down the fight. McGregor said he believed that he won at least four rounds, clearly taking the first three and sneaking in the eighth before Mayweather finished him in the 10th. The Irishman stood firm that he wasn’t hurt at all, but that it was due to sheer exhaustion that he had no legs left to survive the end of the round.
For a man who is used to fighting just five, five-minute rounds in the UFC to jump straight into a 12-round boxing match, it was a major change, one that he wasn’t prepared to handle. The pacing in boxing is just completely different from that of MMA. In conclusion, it was clear that McGregor just didn’t have the boxing stamina required to hang with a fighter of Mayweather’s ilk.
Perhaps, given more experience in boxing, McGregor would be much better suited to last with improved stamina should he choose to return to the ring at some point in his fighting career. He certainly is leaving that door open, telling media that he will, in fact, listen to offers that could come up from other big-name boxers.
3) Mayweather is a master at the mid-fight adjustment
Early on in the fight, Mayweather was having difficulty figuring out McGregor’s timing. McGregor was boxing beautifully from the outside, switching stances and giving Mayweather different looks. Sometimes he would lead with the left from the southpaw stance, and other times he would switch to orthodox and use his jab effectively. This threw Mayweather’s timing off, and the boxing legend found himself unable land cleanly and effectively for long spurts.
But as great champions tend to do, Mayweather would make an adjustment in the middle of the fight that changed everything in an instant. Instead of trying to box McGregor from range, Mayweather opted to take a high guard and push forward, bringing the fight to McGregor and closing the distance. This allowed Mayweather to fight within his optimal punching range.
In the post-fight press conference, McGregor revealed that he wasn’t prepared for this tactic and that it ultimately led to his downfall.
4) Defense wins championships
You’ve heard this before, whether in football, basketball, or any other conventional sport. But it also rings true in boxing. In boxing, defense wins championships, and there is no greater defensive master in history than Floyd Mayweather.
Prior to this bout with McGregor, many fans wondered if the Irishman would land even a single punch on Mayweather. Mayweather is incredibly hard to hit, and only a handful of opponents have been truly able to buzz him. Surprisingly enough, McGregor landed more than expected, 111 of 430 punches (26%) according to CompuBox statistics. Conversely, Mayweather connected on 170 of 320 punches (53%).
During the build-up, UFC President Dana White said that if McGregor could land a clean shot on Mayweather, which he did on multiple occasions, that he would hurt him and eventually knock him out. McGregor landed, but he never hurt Mayweather. That was the biggest difference in the fight.
In the end, Mayweather, like he has done with the biggest punchers he has ever faced prior, took McGregor’s best shots and came back with a healthy dose of his own. Using his defense and timing, Mayweather, like a true boxing master, rolled with the punches and showcased his granite chin and then picked McGregor apart until he finished him.