LOS ANGELES, June 18 — Boxing legend Floyd Mayweather says he has no problem coming out of retirement to fight mixed martial arts star Conor McGregor in what some are predicting will be one of the richest fights in history.
“McGregor is a tough competitor. People all around the world demanded this fight so I had to give them what they wanted to see,” Mayweather told BSOTV in an interview that aired yesterday.
“They asked for this fight. I was in retirement, but they wanted me back and I’m back.”
Mayweather was making his first public comments since Wednesday’s announcement of the much-discussed fight which will take place August 26 in the US boxing capital of Las Vegas.
The 40-year-old Mayweather has been retired since beating Andre Berto in September 2015 and improving his career record to 49-0.
The matchup with McGregor gives Mayweather a chance to reach the 50-0 career milestone.
Asked about financial details of the fight, Mayweather said both sides are pleased.
“Both parties are very happy,” Mayweather said. “He’s very happy, I’m very happy and I can’t wait.”
But many boxing experts have slammed the event as an exhibition spectacle, pointing to the fact that the 28-year-old McGregor has never had a professional boxing match and only dabbled in the sport as a teenager.
The pair have yet to get together face-to-face since the announcement but they are expected to announce a promotional tour soon that will take them to a couple of major US cities.
“You’re supposed to stand behind your man. Stand behind the fighter that you believe in,” Mayweather said about McGregor’s supporters. “He’s a hell of a competitor.” — AFP