After months of smack talk, the biggest fight of the year – and most remarkable sports crossover in a very long time – has finally been confirmed: UFC’s Conor McGregor and boxing legend Floyd Mayweather Jr will face off in a boxing match in Las Vegas this August, an event that’s already being dubbed ‘the biggest fight in pay-per-view history‘.
The news was announced on Mayweather’s Twitter account, and McGregor confirmed it soon after:
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) June 14, 2017
THE FIGHT IS ON. pic.twitter.com/KhW0u3jRft
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) June 14, 2017
They both seem pretty happy to have a date nailed down, and why wouldn’t they be? They’re each set to earn $100 million from the fight, making it one of the most lucrative fights in history.
It won’t be cheap for viewers however: when Mayweather fought Manny Pacquiao in the ‘Fight of the Century’ UK viewers had to pay £19.95 (€24.95 in Ireland) to watch. That bout pulled in over $400 million, but Mayweather v McGregor is already estimated to eclipse that.
It is an unprecedented meeting between two of the greatest sportsmen in the world, but it has also faced a backlash with some commentators criticising it as a “farce” akin to, say, Michael Jordan trying his hand at baseball. How crazy would that be? Oh wait…
Ireland’s McGregor, 28, who has won 21 out of his 24 MMA fights, has helped to turn the UFC from a cult phenomenon into a global sport. He is notorious for mouthing off before and after fights, and has developed a massive fanbase who seem to buy into the personality as much as his dominance in the ring.
Mayweather, 40, is undefeated in 49 boxing matches, winning 26 by knock-out. He retired for the first time back in 2007, but has come out of retirement on several occasions, most notably to defeat long-time rival Manny Pacquiao in 2015.
Naturally, fighting on his home turf and in his own sport, Mayweather is a heavy favourite.
Mayweather vs McGregor will air on 26 August 2017