By Jatan Hunjan
When you talk about the biggest fight of the year, people will certainly mention Anthony Joshua’s epic clash with Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley in April, but that could end up resembling a playground brawl compared to prodigious upcoming contest between Floyd Mayweather and the ‘Notorious’ Conor McGregor. The two fighting giants met in Toronto this week in front of 16,000 fans on the second day of a media tour to promote their fight on the August 26.
The Irishman is well known for getting into his opponent’s heads, and last night was no different. He danced around the stage in his inimitable style, venomously criticising Mayweather before aiming his verbal barrage at the 40-year-old’s promoters. McGregor – who was dressed sharply in a pin-striped suit – focused on taunting Mayweather for his more casual outfit, telling the Money Man to “dress his own age”, rather than like “a 12-year-old breakdancer”. McGregor spotted his opponent’s bag on the stage and quickly used it as more ammunition, asking Mayweather “What are you doing with a schoolbag on stage, when you can’t even read?”. Brutal!
Mayweather struggled to come up with any witty retorts of his own, so it’s safe to say that if the undefeated boxer scored a psychological blow first night, then McGregor was last night’s victor. Despite the man from Dublin’s verbal jabs landed cleanly on Mayweather’s enormous ego, he, of course, claimed to not be fazed him in the slightest. “It’s entertaining, we’re giving the fans what they want to see and what they want to hear,” Mayweather stated to the dozens of media in attendance.
Michigan-born Mayweather, who is thought to be worth well over $300 million, then proceeded to snatch an Irish flag from a fan before waving it around, mocking the patriotic Irishman’s traditional UFC celebration. In response to this McGregor grabbed the Money Man’s Louis Vuitton bag which apparently set him back a cool $5,000. The MMA fighter faced the same antagonism when he fought Jose Aldo in the pentagon. He managed to overcome this and knock the Brazilian warrior out, in a remarkable 13 seconds, tightly shutting the mouths of his critics.
When Mayweather boxed Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao, he earned just north of $100 million, but that will be just a fraction of the amount he will earn fighting McGregor, as the estimated purses show that Mayweather will earn up to a staggering $400 million. McGregor meanwhile will earn at least $75 million, a sum that is nearly five times as much money as he has ever earned at any UFC event.