During fight week for the big UFC 246: Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone fight, there was buzz going around about a possible Manny Pacquiao boxing match with McGregor.
The Irish MMA superstar is very popular on an international level. He has millions of young fanatics who follow him on social media and copy his every move. He is also the highest earning UFC fighter in history surpassing, Chuck Liddell, Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey.
The usually arrogant and vulgar MMA star was rather humble and respectful leading up to his return bout at welterweight (170 lbs) against Cowboy Cerrone.
It was a very different McGregor than we are accustomed to seeing. He stopped drinking Proper 12 whiskey during training camp, wasn’t angry or threatening death to his opponent. He wasn’t acting like a wild man throwing things like bottles or dollies at people or throwing a temper tantrum like a child.
McGregor was simple and came off as a professional yet likeable figure. He revived his career with his new persona, a friendly and happy guy who just simply wants to deliver action in the cage.
It reminds me of Manny Pacquiao. The Pac-Man didn’t talk trash during press-conferences, he smiled and just let his fists do the talking in the ring and boy did he let his fists talk. It made him one of the most likeable boxing stars because he delivered vicious beatdowns inside the ring but carried himself with class outside the ring.
The way McGregor finished off the much bigger Cowboy Cerrone in 40 seconds of the first round without even getting hit was amazing.
I thought he would be in another slug-fest like he was with Nate Diaz. He showed so much power it was unbelievable. He busted Cowboy’s nose and made him bleed with his shoulder. I never seen that before hurting a guy by hitting him over and over with your shoulder..
McGregor looked sluggish in his last two fights against Floyd Mayweather and Khabib Nurmagomedov, but at UFC 246 he was sharp, quick and powerful.
This new McGregor is a scary guy. He reinvented himself, the humble and focused McGregor is a dangerous one.
When I finished watching the fight, I could only think to myself that this guy is not going to be able to make 147-pounds to box Manny Pacquiao.
I know Pacquiao’s team want the McGregor fight next but the weight issue is going to prevent this from happening.
McGregor can fight anyone else in UFC to make money, he can even rematch Floyd Mayweather Jr., he has many options and his own status as a cash cow. It would be foolish for him to risk his health by trying to drain himself to 147 lbs to fight Pacquiao for the WBA welterweight title when he could easily make millions in MMA at his optimal weight of 155 to 170 pounds.
Pacquiao should also be careful. His team might think McGregor would be an easy payday after they witnessed Floyd Mayweather stop him in ten rounds, but that fight was at 154 pounds, not 147.
If Pacquiao decides to fight Conor at 154 it will be a bad move because he will be giving up a huge advantage in size and strength to the Irish fighter. Pacquiao is also in his 40’s and he could age overnight.
We all know Manny won’t back down from a fight but sometimes a fighter can bite off more than he can chew and Pacquiao could be doing that if he decides to fight McGregor. The Pac-Man belongs at welterweight and should stay there until he retires, but he seems to need the money and could entertain it if they offer him enough money.
I say both sides should forget about it and fight other opponents in their own sports.
McGregor versus the winner of Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson or a rubbermatch with Nate Diaz will generate millions.
Pacquiao versus Errol Spence Jr., Terence Crawford or Mikey Garcia would be good matches for Pacquiao before he hangs the gloves up.