Talk of a big crossover fight between boxing legend Manny Pacquiao and MMA big shot Conor McGregor refuses to go away. In fact, the way McGregor tells it, the fight is there for him “whenever I want it.” Speaking at a presser ahead of his UFC bout with “Cowboy” Cerrone, McGregor said it would an honor for him to fight at the soon to be opened Allegiant Stadium (crowd capacity 60,000) in Las Vegas and that a fight with Pacquiao would pit himself against “a small and powerful southpaw.”
Sean Gibbons, Pac Man’s right hand man, has gone as far as to have some mock (or real!?) fight posters drawn up featuring Pacquiao Vs. McGregor, the Allegiant Stadium listed as the fight’s venue. So could the fight happen? McGregor says it would be a “feather in his cap” to become a boxing world champion, and that if the weight of the fight can be sorted out he could fight Pacquiao. As we know, it’s happened before with McGregor stepping into the boxing ring – for his losing, but somewhat entertaining, fight with Floyd “Money” Mayweather back in August of 2017.
Maybe Pacquiao, who is the current WBA welterweight king, will look a the big money a fight with McGregor would net him and indeed take the fight. And as weary as many of us fight fans have become regarding crossover fights, we know we’d all watch this one if it happened.
McGregor still craves a return go at Mayweather, and he is proud of his showing in the 2017 fight – going as far as to suggest he did better against Floyd than Pacquiao did when they fought in the so-called “Fight of The Century” in May of 2015.
“It will be hard to leave the MMA game fully but I think a boxing world title is a great aspiration to have,” McGregor said at the press conference. “I always want bigger and better and to reach for the stars. I would love a rematch with Floyd Mayweather and I know the Manny one is there whenever I want it. I would be honoured and love to be the first combatant to fight in that arena (Allegiant) and what a fight that would be against a small and powerful southpaw. I did well against Floyd. I won rounds and hit him more times than Manny did when they fought. And with small adjustments, I really think I would beat him.”
But as big an attraction as Pacquiao-McGregor would no doubt be, would it be such a great fight? If Pacquiao the nice guy turned up – as we have seen before, where he has been less than venomous in his punching, not exactly “carrying” an opponent but not fighting like the absolute demon he can be (still) when the mood suits him – then maybe McGregor would stick around for some rounds. But if Pac Man the destroyer showed up and really went for the KO, it would be a bad night for McGregor.
Again, we’d all watch it if it happened, and Manny deserves the massive payday he would presumably get from this fight, but there would be only one winner. For sure.