By now, you’ve probably heard and read about a million different opinions and picks on who is going to win the super fight this weekend. You’ve heard your drunk Irish Uncle Rick (who isn’t really Irish but just likes to drink Guinness) tell you how Conor is “going to fook that lass up.” You’ve heard your local bartender tell you how Mayweather is going to dance all over McGregor’s face and put him to sleep inside of three rounds.
While some of these opinions may be right and some are clearly terribly wrong, they usually have one thing in common. They’re all fueled by emotion and hardly any actual boxing analysis. Most of the people I’ve talked to that think McGregor is going to win think so because of “something he said” or more literally because Conor told them so. The ones that think Mayweather is going to win usually just hate Conor.
I’m not saying there aren’t some great analysis and predictions out there. I’m just saying that majority of the information and predictions floating around are not grounded in facts and proper analysis as they should be. What I’d like to do today is give you my fight predictions based not on emotion or who I happen to hate more, but on analysis and logic.
Believe it or not, this fight is going to have one winner and two losers.
Starting With Simple Logic
If I asked you how you thought the best softball player in the world would do plugged into a baseball game against the best team in the majors, how would you say that person would do? Most of you would correctly say they would do terribly because softball and baseball are two different sports. While they have some similarities (played on a diamond, you win the same way, etc.), they are considered two completely different sports that require two completely different skill sets.
Yes, someone who is fast will do well at both sports. Yes, someone with good hand-eye coordination will do well at both sports. But the little nuances are going to create issues for the softball player when they take to the baseball diamond.
This is the perfect analogy of what everyone seems to be missing about MMA and boxing. They are two DIFFERENT sports. Yes, there are still two people trying to punch each other and knock each other out, but it’s a completely different game. The traditional stance is different, the timing is different, the distances and ranges are different, and the skill set in the hands is certainly different. There’s a lot more that you can do when the only two appendages you have to worry about are the arms, and you don’t have to work on anything else or worry about getting hit by anything else.
Ask anyone that has done MMA and boxing or even that has done a different striking sport like Muay Thai and boxing. They will tell you that things are a lot different in the ring when you’re up against a pure boxer. This brings me to my point here, and I’m going to write it in bold because it’s probably the most important takeaway from this article.
Someone who has never boxed professionally before in their life is boxing against one of the most decorated boxers of all-time.
If I told you a softball player who has never played baseball professionally before in their life was joining the major leagues, you would laugh at the idea. Why is no one laughing at the idea of it here? The reason is that people don’t understand the differences. They assume that punching is punching and boxing and MMA are basically the same things.
These are the same people that think UFC is a sport. (It’s not. The UFC is an organization, and the sport is MMA. You don’t say your favorite sport is NBA; you say it’s basketball and your favorite organization/league is the NBA. No charge for this free side lesson.)
If you think that boxing and MMA are basically the same, you’re in for a wakeup call on fight night.
The Biggest Loser Fight Night | The Fans
Get ready to throw tomatoes at me and start booing because I’m about to pop a pin in the excitement bubble everyone has for this fight. This fight is the perfect recipe for one of the more boring snooze fests in boxing history. Mayweather is a counter puncher who likes to bob and weave and dance around the canvas dodging shots and getting his occasional punch in. It’s expert level and is a systematic defeat of his opponents…but it’s boring as hell to watch.
I do not want to take anything away from how amazing of a boxer Floyd Mayweather is. Whether you love him or you hate him, you can’t deny he is one of the best of all time. This does NOT mean that he’s one of the most exciting of all times. For those of you that are MMA fans, Mayweather could be substituted in for Ben Askren when you make your classic boring fight jokes. As Dana White said, “When Ambien can’t sleep, it takes Ben Askren.” (I like you Ben, but I take the low hanging fruit when it comes to easy jokes).
Sadly, the same could be said about Mayweather especially for the casual fans. Serious boxing fans might enjoy watching his elusiveness but the casual fans coming out in droves for this fight are in store for a sad wake-up call. I anticipate that the energy leading up to the fight will be incredible. It will feel surreal. I know I’m going to get chills watching them both step into the ring and touch (or not touch) gloves before they throw down. But then the fight will start…
The first round will probably be a lot of bouncing around with the crowd on their feet, and drunk people will be SOOOO EXCITEDDDD!!!! Dudes and dudettes at the bar will be high fiving like crazy. But, not much of anything is going to happen. They’ll trade some weak blows to feel each other out, and that will be the first round.
Frankly, I think this fight is going to be detrimental to the future of boxing. So many casual and new fans are coming out to watch this fight, and I just don’t think it’s going to deliver. I wish this many new fans were going to watch the GGG vs. Canelo fight coming up as that will probably be the fight of the year. Unfortunately, it’s getting overshadowed by this super fight.
We Remember Why Mayweather is 49-0
My prediction is that Mayweather is going to put on a clinic. We forget how good he is because we get frustrated watching him bob and weave and back away from his opponents constantly. The thing is, though, he’s doing all of this against the best boxers in the entire world. The man has embarrassed some of the greatest fighters of this century. And now we are supposed to worry that he’s going to lose against someone who has never boxed professionally in his life?
I think Mayweather slowly and methodically picks Conor apart. He’s going to be fairly reserved as well because I expect Conor to come out with some unorthodox methods to try and land a power shot on Floyd. I don’t mean like throwing kicks or anything silly like that. I’m referring more to things like what we’ve seen before out of Roy Jones Jr.
He’s going to use things that benefit from his superior athleticism, speed, and agility. I think we’ll see him jumping in often, leading with his power hand often, punching from the hip, looking to strike off of head movement instead of traditional covers, and some unorthodox angles of striking. Basically, he’s going to be boxing Floyd, but he’s going to do it as differently as he possibly can. He’ll be channeling his inner Roy. If he can get Floyd off his game and land a shot, it could get interesting.
Check out the clip here of Roy Jones Jr. versus James Toney. This is the kind of stuff I feel like we’re going to see out of Conor to try and catch Floyd off guard. I set the video at the moment I want you to watch, but the whole video is a good watch. Remember, though, you aren’t watching Conor McGregor here. You’re watching one of the best boxers of all time do what I think Conor may try and replicate. Don’t get excited for Conor after watching this.
As much fun as it is to watch Roy Jones, don’t get too excited for Conor. Here’s the thing. Floyd is not an idiot. He knows that Conor is most likely not going to try and box him orthodox. He’s going to be ready for the wild stuff, and I don’t think will be caught off guard. If Conor comes out with some crazy stuff, Floyd will probably be in safe mode the entire fight which reiterates my first point about the biggest loser fight night being the fans.
In case it isn’t clear already, my pick is Mayweather to win.
KO or Decision
This one is a bit tougher to pick, and I’ll explain why. Mayweather hasn’t knocked anyone out since the 1800s if I recall correctly. His style lends to winning fights, but not finishing them in an entertaining fashion. For that reason, you might want to lean towards decision. But, I also think McGregor is going to be outclassed here significantly which may lead Mayweather to get cockier and actually put him down. For this reason, you might want to lean towards KO or TKO.
The most certain fact of the whole fight is that Mayweather does NOT want to put his perfect record in jeopardy. He’ll be on the lookout for the crazy shots from McGregor which makes me start to lean towards decision. A lot of people also think that Conor quit in his fight against Diaz and once a fighter knows they’re capable of quitting, it becomes a lot easier to do in the future. For that reason, I’d lean towards KO or TKO.
Here’s the bottom line. If you are planning on betting the fight, I’d probably stay away from making a prop bet on how the fight is going to end. If I had to pick how it goes, I’d probably say Floyd puts him away, but frankly, I think it’s too up in the there to warrant a bet.
The Glove Change
One of the bigger storylines of the last week was the change of glove size from 10 oz. to 8 oz. This caused the betting line to move swiftly at a lot of books in Conor McGregor’s favor. Honestly, I think that is insane. Before I tell you why you need to understand something about Floyd Mayweather.
Floyd knows how to win. He is without a doubt the best at winning in probably any sport ever. His success at this always starts way before he steps in the ring. Mayweather will not take a fight that he doesn’t know if he can win or not. He dodged Pacquiao for years until he was a bit older and he knew he could beat him. Yes, that’s up for debate, but you obviously know my opinion on it now.
The point is that everything Floyd does even before he steps in the ring is a calculated move to win. Who suggested the glove size change? Floyd did. He posted it on Facebook and Conor agreed, and they submitted it to be approved. Floyd has fought most of his career in 8 oz. gloves. It’s his playground, and now he gets to bring his own toys.
You will NEVER convince me that Floyd made a suggestion like that to make the fight more interesting or to give Conor a better chance to win. I think this just goes to show you how jaded the betting public is.
Separate What You Want From What You Predict
Conor is the champion of trash talking and selling a fight. The man could sell ice to Eskimos. His ability to sell his chances of winning this fight is of legendary status. To be honest, he had me hyped and believing after watching some of the press conferences. I remember finishing up the first press conference and was about to jump all over Team Conor. But then I came back to Earth.
At the end of the day you have to separate the excitement and the hype from what you know to be true. I’ll repeat myself from earlier in bold again.
Someone who has never boxed professionally before in their life is boxing against one of the most decorated boxers of all-time.
Prediction: Floyd Mayweather Wins by KO/TKO in a one-sided affair
Taylor Smith has been a staff writer with GamblingSites.org since early 2017. Taylor is primarily a sports writer, though he will occasionally dabble in other things like politics and entertainment betting. His primary specialties are writing about the NBA, Major League Baseball, NFL and domestic and international soccer. Fringe sports like golf and horse racing aren’t exactly his cup of tea, bu ...
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