So much has been made about Conor McGregor’s training partners leading into his superfight with Floyd Mayweather on Aug. 26 in Las Vegas. Is McGregor getting the proper sparring? Has anyone been able to emulate Mayweather’s movements inside of the boxing ring? Does the Irishman have enough time to prepare for “Money?” These are just a few of the questions surrounding McGregor and his ongoing camp.
According to one of McGregor’s main sparring partners, top Irish boxing prospect Tiernan Bradley, the UFC lightweight champion is a much better boxer than people think. In fact, Bradley believes that McGregor’s unique movement and distance control will help him even the playing field against Mayweather.
“Conor is a very good boxer,” Bradley told MMA Fighting. “He doesn’t move like any other boxer. He’s powerful, fast and light on his feet ... He’s very good at getting in and out and connecting. He’s so quick on his feet it’s very hard to judge the distance with him.
“He’s so fast and unpredictable — that’s a very dangerous combination. I don’t think Mayweather has ever boxed anyone like that.”
“It’s very different to any style I’ve seen over the years,” Bradley added. “He has this strange style and he can keep going at a serious pace for 12 rounds. He’s on his toes and he’s constantly keeping you guessing.
“My biggest takeaway from the rounds was the pace that we fought at and that he seemed unbreakable. I found it very hard to figure him out.”
While many people believe that McGregor’s knockout power is going to struggle to carry over from the Octagon to the boxing ring, where fighters wear bigger gloves, Bradley has experienced the shift firsthand and can attest to the Irishman’s natural strength.
“I’ve got a black eye at the moment and I got that from him when he was wearing 16-ounce gloves,” Bradley said.
“I don’t know if you’ve seen the photo that he uploaded onto his Instagram after our session. People are talking about his left hand and whether the power will be there with 10-ounce gloves — he lifted me off my feet with a right uppercut in 16 (ounce gloves)!
“That shot came out of nowhere. It was so fast and powerful. I can tell you now that those kinds of shots would drop boxers, and that was his right hand. He will definitely keep his stopping power with 10-ounce gloves on.”
There you have it. Bradley is obviously going to boost McGregor up because that’s what sparring partners do, but if the photo McGregor posted on his Instagram account (shown above) is real, what more proof do fight fans need?
That said, even if McGregor can retain his knockout power when he steps inside of the ring on Aug. 26, the UFC champ will still have to deal with Mayweather’s speed and defense. Those are two things McGregor, or any of his sparring partners, can’t necessarily prepare for, and the most likely causes of the Irishman’s downfall.