Congratulations to Floyd “Money” Mayweather for his 50th professional victory and more importantly the troll job of the century. Floyd will likely eclipse $300 million in earnings based on the rumored 6.5 million PPV buys. Some may argue no individual in today’s society needs that much money for one fight (Commy Bastards!). Personally, I believe how skillfully Floyd trolled the majority of the public makes him well deserving of this prize. Floyd Mayweather may not be able to read well, but he is a remarkable athlete, businessman, and promoter. He single handedly corrupted the minds of both haters and supporters. He made them believe they were seeing a different Floyd Mayweather in this fight. Even after the match people believe they saw an aggressive, offensive fighter. Let me assure you something, this is far from the reality of the matter.
In the weeks prior to the match, Mayweather went on record stating that he would come forward and bring the fight to McGregor. He said he owed the fans for his lackluster performance vs. Manny Pacquiao. In recent memory Mayweather’s defensive style had been as effective as it was boring for the fans to watch. This brought skepticism as well as newfound excitement. Would Floyd really take the chance of moving forward into the range of Conor McGregor’s infamous left hand? This added another element to a fight that already has so many question marks. The fans listening at home pictured a version of Floyd that was hungry to prove a point to the combat community. They pictured someone coming forward and looking for a knockout early. They pictured a smaller version of boxer’s such as Mike Tyson, George Foreman, and Marvin Hagler who stalked their prey with powerful blows and bad intentions.
Fight night came with everyone on the edge of their seats about how the first few rounds would play out. Floyd Mayweather proved to be a man of his word. He also proved that he was the smartest man of the millions watching around the world, as well as those in the ring. Floyd came forward, but not the same way as those legends previously mentioned. For Floyd, moving forward was about being the defensive mastermind he has been for the majority of his career. No one in the history of boxing, or combat sports for that matter, is better at avoiding risk and real damage in a fight.
Floyd did his homework just as Conor, his team, analysts, and hardcore fans did around the globe. In this instance, Floyd ruined the grading curve. He got an A+ and the best of the rest got B’s if anything. Conor has power, despite what the haters want to say about him now. His power is extraordinary, likely the greatest ever seen by a Featherweight/Lightweight Mixed Martial Artist. The issue was clearly what Mayweather so blatantly pointed out since day one. This is boxing, and no Conor, you don’t run boxing.
McGregor has often said, “timing beats speed, precision beats power”. What this means in the end is the correct strike in the correct situation presents the most danger. Conor’s striking style has proved multiple times to be devastating from an offensive standpoint. Defensively, weaknesses are evident but his chin and athleticism counteract the danger. MMA fights are often fought at a distance if you are purely looking to strike for a variety of reasons but most significantly to avoid grappling. The point of impact for MMA strikes often comes when the aggressor’s arm is close to fully extended. Due to this the strikes are telegraphed slightly, but gloves with a very small surface area provide less protection making them more difficult to defend.
Boxing is a sport that ranges vary, but the majority of matches are fought in a phone booth better known as “the pocket”. Generating power in the pocket is far different than generating power from a distance. Power is still created by technique, but the technique is not the same. Fast movement of energy through multiple joint rotations starting at the feet and working their way straight up through the knee, hips, shoulders, and elbows create a boxers power. A boxer can very rarely take a large step into punches such as those seen when McGregor knocked out Eddie Alvarez to win the Lightweight Crown.
This is where Floyd Mayweather trolled us all. Floyd knows boxing, and he understands the minds of elite athletes from years of dominance. Floyd identified through everything Conor did leading up to the fight, that the confidence which got him there dangerously flirted with hubris. He knew Conor would trust his typical striking style as it had never failed him in the past. It was likely successful in amateur boxing as well, but this was no amateur, it was Floyd “Money” Mayweather. In knowing the style, moving forward was the safest bet to defeat it.
Floyd moved forward for the majority of the fight in a defensive manner. Closing the distance prevented Conor from throwing anything with legitimate power. Even the uppercut that landed early on didn’t impact Floyd much. In addition to this, moving forward also broke Conor’s cardio faster than it should have. As always, Conor constantly tried to measure and create distance by holding out his lead hand. By pressing him, Floyd forced Conor to exert more energy in attempting to push off the ever advancing defensive genius. Floyd had a game plan and it worked to perfection. Looking back at the fight it could be argued if Mayweather pressed as he did and threw zero punches the first 9 rounds, he would have still TKO’d a gassed McGregor in the 10th.
Mayweather trolled us all, anyone suggesting otherwise is delusional. We purchased the fight, and praised him for losing his defensive style for the fans. This is not the truth though. The truth is, he showed us all that his defense first style is the most effective manner of fighting and there are many ways to be defensive. For this, I applaud Floyd Mayweather, the most mentally brilliant, and deservingly wealthy, fighter of all time.