Though he has retired from the sport of boxing where he made his name as one of the absolute best, Floyd Mayweather may not be done with combat sports just yet.
The brash star has a perfect 50-0 record in his primary sport and has won multiple championships across various weight classes. The only thing that may surpass his professional accomplishments is the price tag his fights usually come with.
Mayweather is notorious for bragging about his big paydays and touting the importance of his fights. A fitting goal for any prize fighter, his penchant for promotion has helped him become one of the highest paid athletes in combat sports.
Mayweather’s most recent victory came over a man who was making his professional boxing debut. Though an apparent mismatch on paper, the namesake of the opponent made the bout one of the most hyped in combat sports history.
‘The Money Fight’ featured Conor McGregor stepping into the boxing ring against Mayweather, marking a historic moment where boxing and mixed martial arts worked to copromote a fight. Though such fantasy matchups were discussed in the past, one never materialized until WME-IMG took over the UFC.
After Mayweather’s TKO victory over McGregor, which saw him taking his time and outpacing the challenger throughout the course of the matchup, rumors were swirling about McGregor’s next move. Many wondered whether he would stick around in boxing or return to MMA.
Mayweather, on the other hand, has nothing left to prove in the boxing ring. He’s ready to start his own line of fitness facilities, focusing more on business than sports.
But he may not be finished throwing hands just yet – Mayweather recently posted a picture of himself on social media, standing in an octagon, with the caption ‘Come at the king, you best not miss.’
His MMA debut would be another historic moment and would make him the most high-profile boxer to ever test his luck in the octagon. Roy Mercer had luck outside of the UFC, defeating former heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia in a matter of seconds. James Toney didn’t fare so well, however, losing by submission in the first round to former heavyweight and light heavyweight champion Randy Couture.
The idea of boxing versus MMA has died down significantly over the years, as many have come to view the comparison between the two sports as an ‘apples and oranges’ situation. Great boxing skills can help in MMA, but they don’t always translate to victory.
If Mayweather did make his debut in the octagon, it is unlikely it would be against McGregor. He’s still the UFC lightweight champion, and the interim champ and his latest challenger have both called for McGregor to either defend his belt or vacate the title.
UFC president Dana White has also stated McGregor couldn’t go two years without defending. This means a rematch on McGregor’s home turf could feasibly happen if Mayweather signs a multi-fight deal, but there are still questions about if and when he’ll make his first appearance.