Floyd Mayweather defeated Conor McGregor last weekend (Sat., Aug. 26, 2017) in the highly-anticipated “Money Fight” in Las Vegas, Nevada, via tenth round technical knockout to collect his 50th professional win.
But, “Notorious” walked away a winner, too, as he earned the respect and praise of the entire sports world and even got some love from his old foes, though not all in the mixed martial arts (MMA) world were as complimentary.
Oscar de la Hoya, who opposed the bout from day one, was also one of the few who were not convinced that the bout lived up to the hype, saying the fight was nothing but a fraud and it wouldn’t have been competitive if Mayweather hadn’t allowed it.
“I still think it was a farce. I still think that the fans deserve better,” said Oscar during a recent appearance on The MMA Hour. “I think that the fact this morning news articles are coming out about Floyd bet tons of money to win in the tenth round, I just don’t fall for it.”
For Oscar, the fact that pure boxing and MMA are two different sports is what turned him off from the onset.
“Boxing is one sport and UFC is a totally different sport. I’m a huge supporter of McGregor and I think he is the best fighter in the UFC and I respect him. I am going to buy his fights when he fights because I am a fan,” he added. “I just think it’s like, it’s two different sports and I feel bad for the fans who, look, boxing is a sport that fighters train all their life to be a boxer and fighters train all of their lives to be a UFC fighter. It’s two different sports and punches come from different angles. I just thought it was just all a big fraud.”
As far as Conor’s performance, Oscar says it was just hard to watch and say the only reason “Notorious” hung in there and won a few rounds was because “Money” allowed him to.
“Well, because Mayweather let him. The first four or five rounds, he let him do that. When you have Mayweather, who is arguably the best boxer on the planet today, the best defensive boxer, and then you have McGregor who is the best UFC fighter hands down, they just don’t, punches come from different angles and it was a bit awkward to watch, actually,” said the former multiple-time champion.
“Look, I respect McGregor and I respect UFC, I really do, but when you have these stories from reputable people coming out saying that Mayweather bet on himself in the tenth round to win, I just don’t fall for it.”
In the end, though, he does see a silver lining with Mayweather vs. McGregor as his event — which will see Canelo Alvarez take on Gennady Golovkin on September 16 — will look that much better.
“I’m glad so many people got to watch McGregor vs Mayweather because on September 16 you will find out what a boxing match actually is. Look, boxing is boxing and MMA fighting is MMA fighting. We train all of our lives for one style. UFC guys train one style and that is the MMA style. It’s pure, respectable and incredible the way you guys throw punches from different angles, foot movement. It’s different and you can’t compare it to boxing. So all I’m trying to say is that on September 16, Canelo has been training all his life in the boxing world and so has GGG. you will see the best boxing match that boxing has to offer this year.”
As far as his recent aggressive tweet toward the fight, Oscar says all he was trying to do was “defend his sport.” Referring to Dana White’s response, he says he was disappointed by his words, as he himself has never attacked Dana personally. Still, de la Hoya says he’ll brush it off and his love and respect for MMA will not change; even if his friendship with White has taken a sour note.
To conclude, Oscar says if McGregor would’ve stepped into the ring against his guy Canelo, the red-haired pugilist would’ve knocked him out in the first round, two at the latest, as he wouldn’t have given the Irishman a second to breathe for the sake of making it interesting.