A big change has just happened regarding negotiations for the highly anticipated Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather boxing superfight.
According to an unnamed source (via The LA Times' Lance Pugmire), “discussions to make the fight are underway” between Floyd Mayweather's manager Al Haymon and UFC owners WME-IMG, with Dana White no longer involved in the talks. This is both surprising and unsurprising ... White had publicly said he wasn't willing to spend an extended amount of time negotiating the boxing fight between McGregor and Mayweather, saying it took away from time he needed to spend on UFC events.
But many expected the UFC president to take the lead on making the fight happen, or the fight to fall apart if White ended up getting frustrated with the notoriously particular Mayweather team. Up until this point, WME-IMG has taken a largely hands off approach to the UFC's day to day business (or seem to in the public eye, at least). This will be the first huge fight elevated above Dana and handled by WME-IMG agents.
Other details included in the report: the target date, listed as early fall. This isn't new information ... McGregor and White had previously said they were targeting September until Golden Boy Productions booked up Canelo vs. Golovkin for September 16th. Now we've heard whispers of November, but that all depends on how long it takes for a deal to get done. McGregor is already in training for the fight.
Getting a deal done involves more than just agreeing to a date and money split. There are other considerations as well, like weightclass, glove weight, and who will referee. It will be interesting to see how everything turns out without Dana White at the wheel looking out for his fighter.