Mr. Floyd Mayweather lashed out Conor McGregor for the 34 gazillionth time earlier, telling Conor he would have to cut the “dirty” stuff that Floyd saw him doing in training.
“I truly believe the ref is gonna do his job,” Mayweather said. “The referee’s job is to make sure the fight is, that he’s keeping the bout clean. And I wanna, let’s put on a hell of a fight. Like I’ve said on numerous occasions building up to this fight: I’m coming straight ahead. So he don’t got nothing to worry about. I look forward to following the Queensbury rules of boxing, and I’m pretty sure he looks forward to following the Queensbury rules of boxing.”
“He had [boxing referee] Joe Cortez in his training camp, which is a great thing. Even though he had Joe Cortez in his training camp, I still saw him doing, being extremely dirty. But my job is not to worry about the referee. My job is to go out there and fight, and let the referee do his job.”
Paulie Malignaggi, a fellow disliker of McGregor seems to agree with that, saying that may even get disqualified if he tries what he did in the now infamous Malignaggi sparring sessions…
“Rules are different in mixed martial arts than they are in boxing and he wanted to know what he’s doing wrong and what he’s doing right and what not so every single sparring session he had, [Hall of Fame referee] Joe Cortez was there.
“One thing Conor has to understand – and you see that in that clip that they sent out – it wasn’t so much that he’s landing shots because most of the shots are missing. If anything, they’ve shot themselves in the foot because all the dirty stuff he does that the referee will actually warn him for. In that particular sparring session, there’s no judges, but he lost two points from that particular sparring session for fouls, for rabbit punching and hitting behind the head and pushing behind the head.”
Concerns about McGregor reverting to MMA tactics once inside the ring were among the first issues addressed once the fight was made official and the penalty should McGregor do something like kick Mayweather is said to be substantial. But the idea that McGregor, who has never boxed professionally before and is transitioning from a sport where infighting is less strict, might have trouble adjusting to the new way of fighting isn’t beyond the pale. And that, according to Malignaggi, is one of the biggest issues Conor is facing heading into this fight and could get him in trouble come Aug. 26.
“What he really has to learn is to try to keep it within the rules because he’s a little bit confused as to what he’s doing in there. He’s a little bit confused, especially on the inside as you can see on that tape. He’s trying to grab and push the head down. Inside fighting in boxing is very different from inside fighting in mixed martial arts. You can’t grab. You actually have to know what you’re doing on the inside. . .
“I think Conor has to learn to turn punches over but more than that he needs to learn how to keep it clean. He’s gonna get himself disqualified if he keeps punching behind the head and pushing the head down. He needs to understand that inside fighting in boxing is different than inside fighting in mixed martial arts.”
Paulie did, in a surprise move, give Conor a chance in the bout, saying he had, while not a huge chance, a chance nonetheless.
“If you’re looking at it style-wise, it’s not a matchup. Style-wise, Conor can’t match Floyd at all. I think what you want to really look at for this matchup is the intensity. Conor’s the younger guy. He’s bringing that youthful intensity and the intensity Conor brings can sometimes be a change of pace. Floyd’s fought some great fighters, he’s beaten some great fighters, but all of them, to a degree, have had a little bit of respect for Floyd because they know how good he is and what he can do. Conor is coming in a little bit as a rookie. Call it ignorance is bliss in a way, but it also makes it more exciting because he’s not really coming with that kind of respect.”