Floyd Mayweather took 10 rounds to stop Conor McGregor in the boxing ring, but according to Mayweather, he didn’t force the KO because he was concerned for McGregor’s long-term health.
McGregor, 29, was taking a beating and on his way to being knocked out cold by Mayweather. If not for referee Robert Byrd stepping in to save McGregor early in the 10th round, chances are the UFC champion was going to hit the canvas.
Mayweather said he didn’t want to see McGregor’s career cut short due to potential brain damage.
“He has a career. You know, he still has a career. He’s still young,” Mayweather said on the Hollywood Unblocked podcast, per MMAJunkie. “It could’ve been very damaging. We have to think about these fighters. Even, like, my uncle Roger. Right now, I just got a call just before I came here. He keeps walking off, wandering off. No one can find him. He ends up in a hospital. So, brain damage – it happens. It happens.”
Despite Mayweather’s claims, he was throwing everything he had at McGregor in the 10th round and looked to be head hunting.
Mayweather still insists, on paper, his younger opponent McGregor had the big advantage going into the fight, despite never having stepped foot in the boxing ring for a professional fight.
“OK, hold on. It’s a catch 22,” Mayweather said. “If I blew him out in the first round, they would have something to say. If we let the fight go on a little longer than expect, they’re going to have something to say. So it’s like, damned if I do, damned if I don’t. If I let it go the distance, they’re going to say something.
“Once again, we’re praising him. We’re not praising me. We’re praising him. Because I’m 40 years old, retired for two years. He’s 28, he’s active. I’m inactive. He’s taller, he’s bigger. Hey may not be stronger. He has a longer reach. He’s taller. He’s bigger. He’s younger. Youth is on his side. I’m just saying, everything on paper links on him. For me to come and be off, and really only train totally, probably three weeks .. and (I was) out every night partying.”
The UFC lightweight champion had success early in the fight but faded in the middle rounds. Floyd Mayweather said in his post-fight interview that was his final boxing match and he is retired now.
While Conor McGregor said in his post-fight interview, he would like to try another boxing match.