THE UFC HAVE nothing to gain from allowing Conor McGregor to box Floyd Mayweather, but they owe it to the Dubliner to give the bout their approval.
That’s according to UFC president Dana White, who says McGregor has gone out of his way in the past to save some big fights for the leading organisation in mixed martial arts.
McGregor, the UFC’s reigning lightweight champion, has accepted changes of opponent at late notice on several occasions, when a refusal to compete would have cost the organisation substantial pay-per-view income.
Dana White has told The Herd on Fox Sports 1 that he believes a boxing match between McGregor and Floyd Mayweather isn’t in the UFC’s best interests, but they’re willing to get behind it in order to return the favour for their biggest star.
“At the end of the day, does this fight make a ton of sense for me? It really doesn’t,” White insisted. “But Conor wants this thing really bad and I’ve said it many times — the kid has stepped up and saved some big fights for me, so I’m in. I’ll figure it out.”Source: Colin Cowherd/YouTube
No agreements are in place yet for the bizarre bout between McGregor and the undefeated former multiple-weight boxing champion, who has said that he’ll only come out of retirement for a clash with the UFC fighter, in what would be Mayweather’s 50th professional fight.
Las Vegas in September looks likely to play host to such a contest. McGregor has yet to receive a boxing licence from the Nevada State Athletic Commission, but White insists that agreeing on the financial split is “absolutely” the only stumbling block.
White believes the negotiations should only take a matter of days, with Mayweather set to pocket the majority of the purse as the 40-year-old American “feels like he’s the A-side” of the show.
“I think we get the McGregor side done in the next couple of days and then I go lock myself in a room for a couple of days with Team Mayweather and see what we can come out with,” White said regarding the negotiations.
As expected, it will be a lucrative occasion for both fighters, with McGregor — if White is to be believed — in line to benefit from a substantial increase on what he’s used to earning in the UFC.
Last June, Forbes reported that the 28-year-old took in €22 million in the previous year, although his fight salaries rose significantly again for his subsequent victories over Nate Diaz and Eddie Alvarez in August and November respectively.
White said: “It depends on how much the fight sells. If the fight sells as well as I think it can, Floyd makes a little north of 100 [million dollars] and Conor makes 75.”