Floyd Mayweather says he 'took it easy' on Conor McGregor

By @saihoops on
Aug 26, 2017; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. lands a hit against Conor McGregor during the tenth round at T-Mobile Arena Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Floyd Mayweather, widely regarded as the finest boxer of his generation, has revealed that he "took it easy" on UFC star Conor McGregor during their crossover fight last month. Though McGregor gave a good account of himself in his pro boxing debut, many analysts felt Mayweather could have finished the bout earlier. 

McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC, 0-1 boxing) lasted 10 rounds before Mayweather (50-0 boxing) sealed a TKO victory. The Irishman earned a guaranteed purse of $US30 million (AU$37 million) besides a projected overall earnings north of US$100 million (AU$125 million). 

Mayweather told Hollywood Unblocked Podcast recently that he didn't want to leave McGregor with brain damage. “He has a career. You know, he still has a career. He’s still young. It could’ve been very damaging. We have to think about these fighters. Even my uncle Roger. Right now, I just got a call just before I came here. He keeps walking off, wandering off. No one can find him. He ends up in a hospital. So, brain damage -- it happens. It happens.”

Conor McGregor’s next fight unlikely before 2018

According to John Kavanagh, the coach of McGregor, the UFCL Lightweight champion is unlikely to defend his title before the end of the year. In fact, Kavanagh ruled out the possibility of another McGregor fight in 2017. “It’s probably a little late in the day to realistically expect another fight before the end of the year, because even after this hiatus is over, a lot goes into the planning and execution of a training camp at our level. I find it hard to envisage another fight in 2017," Kavanagh wrote in column for The42.ie.

UFC president Dana White has said that McGregor's next title defence could also come against the winner of the upcoming bout between Tony Ferguson (22-3 MMA, 12-1 UFC) and Kevin Lee (16-2 MMA, 9-2 UFC). The second and seventh-ranked fighters in the division will square off at UFC 216 on Oct. 7.

Conor McGregor has also been rumoured to fight archrival Nate Diaz for a third time in 2018. Prior to the much-anticipated trilogy, Diaz (19-11 MMA, 14-9 UFC) would have to earn a title shot at the 155-pound division by fighting another contender. The Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz trilogy will be the biggest fight in UFC history.