August 26 marked the date of what is allegedly the biggest fight ever to be put together by a promoter. The estimated 6.5 million pay-per-view buys make this a historically relevant fight and a bout that will have an impact on how business is done in the future for all the combat sports.
Personally, I anticipated this fight more than any other fight in all of the combat sports. I was intrigued of not only the result but the anticipation of the unknown. Whether it was positive or negative, every fight fan, trainer, sponsor, promoter, and fighter had their opinion of the outcome. In reality, not many people were able to even come close to a solid prediction of the actions during the rounds. That isn’t a bad thing, considering a fight is not supposed to be predicted easily, or even at all. A bout that sells well to fans and that brings a good revenue is a bout that puts both opponents at equal odds of win or a loss – this summarised the entire marketing campaign heading into the fight.
The Money Fight was perfect! People were gearing up to watch The Money Fight from all locations worldwide. The crowd in attendance was buzzing on their feet for the entirety of the fight. Millions of dollars were placed in bets for both parties. Most of the naysayers were proven wrong. And finally, Floyd Mayweather Jr., arguably the greatest boxing-purist of all time won!
Unfortunately, there are still many ignorant opinions circling through the media and from fans. These people are quick to ‘bash’ Conor McGregor and mixed martial artists. Mayweather, however, is a winner. Everyone who seemingly hated Mayweather for his boring style and abusive personality now completely admire him. Of course, we’re all entitled to an opinion. But, it worries me that the people who are criticising McGregor and MMA are those people who have never watched a mixed martial arts contest or have never practised it, either.
Just for the record, Floyd has been my favourite boxer for over a decade and Conor has become my favourite mixed martial artist in recent times. I hold close relationships with a lot of fighters, from amateur and professional boxers to amateur and professional MMA fighters; they now feel offended and disrespected by the name-calling and general ignorance that has been thrown towards both McGregor and MMA.
Why am I writing about this?
Well, because they are completely wrong! Sports bring people together. Everyone has their favourite competitors. We watch the fights; sometimes the person we cheer gets the win and sometimes they don’t. But, at the end of the day, we should all remain respectful towards all competitors. Otherwise, we end up disrespecting not only the person targeted, but the sport itself too. Ideally, all combat sports should be standing together.
The new kid on the block
The aftermath of the Mayweather vs McGregor fight has made me realise how new the sport of mixed martial arts is. Many have heard of and watched MMA, but not as many understand it. Many old-school fight fans have stereotypical views towards MMA. Nonetheless, it is a sport that is constantly evolving. After the altercation of Floyd and Conor on August 26th, I believe the sport received more positive than negative attention. It allegedly broke the pay-per-view numbers for combat events. It gained worldwide exposure and appreciation. And after it all, Conor showed that MMA is indeed up there with boxing and managed to hang in there with Mayweather Jr. for 10 rounds.
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