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Ex-boxing champion Andre Berto: ‘Cocky’ Conor McGregor can catch Floyd Mayweather ... and stop him

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Boxing: Mayweather vs McGregor-World Tour Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Andre Berto was the last person to step into the boxing ring against Floyd Mayweather, losing a unanimous decision to “Money” in Sept. 2015, right before the pound-for-pound best boxer in the world decided to hang up his gloves.

Now that he’s about to re-enter the boxing ring to face Conor McGregor on Aug. 26, 2017, in Las Vegas, Nevada, all eyes will be on “Money” to see whether he still has it or if a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter with no professional boxing experience can somehow tarnish his perfect professional record (49-0).

To hear Berto tell it, if McGregor can somehow get into Mayweather’s head come fight night, he could very well turn the combat sports world on its head with the upset of the century.

“I see Conor coming in there really showing that bravado, showing that cockiness and showing that he’s really there to fight,” Berto said on a recent edition of “The MMA Hour” (via MMA Fighting). “And somewhat trying to steal the stage from Floyd just with his antics and he kind of gets Floyd into a mind-game situation, has him pulling some type of mistakes and [Mayweather] gets caught with a big shot and gets hurt. And [McGregor] could stop him.”

According to Berto, “Notorious” has a gift for prospering under the bright lights and biggest atmosphere, as opposed to many who would be quick to fold under the spotlight. Of course, no one has been able to get into Mayweather’s head throughout his storied combat career, which has has him one more win away from surpassing Rocky Maricano’s unbeaten streak.

That’s because Mayweather has the skills and knack for picking apart his opponents, something that could also very well happen later this month. Especially if McGregor doesn’t protect his body, according to this pro boxer.

“Or I see Floyd not playing into any of these antics and being who he is, to stay poised and to stay sharp and let his boxing skills just pick Conor apart,” Berto said. “And either late rounds stop Conor just from the accumulation of shots or maybe cuts or just being beat up, or just outboxing him for 12 rounds and just trying to make him look silly.”

At the end of the day, Berto knows all too well that the fight game is full of surprises. And one punch can change the course of the bout in the blink of an eye.

“It’s the fight game — anything can happen,” Berto said. “It’s either Conor catches him early, finishes him or Floyd is going to outbox him and make him look silly and tries to embarrass him.”