Floyd Mayweather really wants to box a mixed martial arts (MMA) star again. Back in 2017, Mayweather boxed Conor McGregor in the biggest pay-per-view (PPV) of all time. Despite McGregor making things competitive early on, Mayweather eventually finished the Irishman in the 10th round.
Over the years, there has been a lot of chatter about the pair potentially rematching. However, after UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov defeated Conor McGregor in 2018, there has also been talks of “The Eagle” possibly boxing Mayweather. Mayweather certainly seems interested in boxing the UFC lightweight champ, posting the following on his Instagram this past weekend.
Before Nurmagomedov can think of a boxing fight with Mayweather, he has a lightweight title defense to worry about. The Russian champ puts his gold up for grabs against Tony Ferguson, the man many believe can hand Nurmagomedov the first loss of his MMA career, at the UFC 249 PPV from Brooklyn, New York on April 18.
After that, however, the Nurmagomedov camp tells TASS that they’re open to fighting Mayweather, and will begin negotiations for the fight. Khabib’s father, Abdulmanap, noted that his son will work with unified lightweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko for six months before fighting Mayweather. He also threw in an interesting stipulation. The Nurmagomedovs are willing to box 11 rounds with Mayweather, but want the 12th and final round to be under MMA rules.
“Mayweather has statistics on fights of 50 wins and zero losses, he is the greatest in boxing and he wants to fight with the same champion who did not lose a single fight, with Khabib, everything is fine, but now we have Tony Ferguson on the line. We said a long time ago: let us finish with Tony, after that we will work with [the team of Ukrainian boxer Vasily] Lomachenko for six months, then there will be a boxing fight.
“We offer any day anywhere, with only one condition: 11 rounds in boxing and one in mixed martial arts (MMA). We will stand 11 rounds against the best boxer, so why not go one round according to the rules of MMA with us? But all things will happen after Tony.”
It will be interesting to see if Mayweather would ever agree to compete under an MMA ruleset. Nurmagomedov is one of the most dominant and punishing fighters on the ground, so it’s very hard to believe that Mayweather would risk taking that level of damage.
What do you think about Nurmagomedov boxing 11 rounds with Mayweather, and fighting in MMA for one round?