LAS VEGAS, NV, AUGUST, 26, 2017
To fans of boxing, the historic match between MMA’s top fighter, Conor McGregor, and boxing legend, Floyd Mayweather, may look like a loss. Mayweather beat McGregor by TKO, when McGregor fatigued in the 10th round.
But fans of MMA know that McGregor won a much bigger fight than a single boxing match.
McGregor proved that when it comes fighting MMA is a superior skill set to boxing.
Because the first UFC was so long ago, people forget that those experiments were already run. Back then, there were no weight classes, no gloves, and really no rules other than no biting, fish hooking, or eye gouging.
When the early UFC fighters did those experiments and tested different fighting skills in that environment, jiu jitsu came out as the dominant sport. It proved far more effective than all the others.
Boxing fans and critics believe that MMA fighters are somehow beneath them, because their striking prowess is somehow inferior to that of a trained boxer. McGregor proved that MMA fighters can hold up in a boxing fight.
It was easier for Mayweather to look composed and relaxed, because he was competing in something that he’s done since he was a child.
But McGregor competed outside his comfort zone. He went into his opponent’s domain and won the first four rounds. He became fatigued and tired but only after competing for longer than anyone expected him to.
The fight proved that MMA fighters can do a whole lot better in the boxing realm than boxers could do in the MMA realm.
Not only are MMA fighters more adept at transferring their skill set to boxing, but MMA is a lot closer to a real fight than boxing is.
Boxing is just one component of MMA. If the roles had been reversed, even the best boxer in the world couldn’t survive more than a few seconds in the MMA world.
Nobody on the planet thinks or believes that Mayweather would last a round – let alone a minute – had he met McGregor on his turf.
He went ten rounds with arguably the best boxer of all time, and he still never took a knee or was dropped. Boxers don’t spend any time training the clinch. Hand fighting and the clinch gave Mayweather problems, because it wasn’t conventional.
If McGregor had been able to throw elbows, knees, or kicks – fighting skills that he had but wasn’t able to use – Mayweather wouldn’t have stood a chance. The minute the fight hits the ground, Mayweather is going to be completely out of his element.
McGregor helped both MMA and boxing. Mayweather’s last few fights have been flops, and nobody wanted to watch them anymore. It took an MMA fighter getting in the ring to bring the sport back to life. McGregor pushed him and made him a more exciting fighter.
Three years ago, nobody thought this fight would ever happen. The whole boxing community thought it was a farce, and nobody thought he stood a chance.
Boxing fans can no longer deny the science and complexity of MMA. McGregor continues to do the unexpected and prove people wrong, and that’s what fans will remember.