UFC president Dana White has never been the most enthusiast proponent of a potential Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor boxing match, but he is a savvy businessman and has never closed the door on the idea. With UFC 210 coming up this Saturday in Buffalo, NY, White was on the media circuit promoting the upcoming fights. These conversations inevitably make their way back to the potential McGregor-Mayweather fight, and White was very open about his willingness to make the fight happen and about his respect for McGregor as a fighter.
White spoke of how McGregor has stepped up in the past for the UFC and, even though he fully admits that the fight having a boxing format doesn’t make business sense for the UFC, he says that he will assist McGregor in any way he can to make it happen:
“I am [working on it]. The money that’s involved in this thing — listen, does it make a bunch of sense for my business? No. But Conor has been a guy who has stepped up in times of need here, in big fights when an opponent fell out, so I want to do this for Conor. I want him to be able to make this kind of money.
White’s comments come a day after the report that McGregor has now focused his training completely over to boxing, according to his coach and longtime friend John Kavanagh. While there is still nothing official about a fight being scheduled, it appears the important parties in this negotiation have confidence that a fight will now take place in 2017. White said as much on the Chris Mannix show, stating that he believes the fight will take place later this year and that negotiations will begin after McGregor’s girlfriend delivers the baby boy they are expecting later this month.
It can be inferred from White’s comments today that his openness towards this fight started to shift when he saw the amount of attention and intrigue such a fight would create and how much money McGregor could make off this likely one-time opportunity.
“It’s a fight that people do want to see,” White said. “It’s intriguing and obviously it’s a fight that Conor wants because financially it’s going to be massive for him. McGregor, he’s a guy that I have a lot of respect for.”
While Floyd Mayweather has proven to be ageless in the ring, the undefeated (49-0) fighter turned 40 last month and one can only wonder how many more years he will entertain these types of fights. McGregor won’t even turn 29 until July of this year so Mayweather will come into the ring almost 11 and half years older than his UFC counterpart.
Of course, the biggest driving force for making this fight happen is the financial windfall it will provide for the many interested parties. Mayweather has earned over $700 million in the ring throughout his boxing career, but this potential fight is estimated to make $100 million for Mayweather alone. A prior sticking point has been the compensation for McGregor, who was previously offered $15 million by the Mayweather camp but was not enthused by the offer.
Previous reports have stated that the fight was “almost done”, with a mid-September date in Las Vegas, but nothing official has been announced to date. Given the way the core participants are speaking about the potential for the fight, it appears that resolution should be reached, one way or another in the coming weeks. original article collected form Forbes