Floyd Mayweather, a boxer who lies about being retired, has taken all of four months to start speculating about his next fight. He recently said that he has an offer from the UFC, and Dana White talked to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto today to continue hyping up a mixed martial arts debut for the famously brittle boxing man who has never stepped foot into the octagon and would lose his head in seconds if he did.
“We’re talking to Floyd about doing a UFC deal,” White told ESPN. “It’s real. He was talking about [boxing] Conor McGregor. Was that real? Have you heard Floyd talk about many things that aren’t real? He usually tips his hand when he’s in the media, and then that shit ends up happening.
“We’re interested in doing something with Floyd. Everything is a realistic possibility. Mayweather vs. McGregor fucking happened. Anything is possible.”
In White’s defense, sure, McGregor did fight Mayweather. It’s a useless exercise to speculate about his chances in MMA, because even the Nevada State Athletic Commission is not corrupt enough to put a 40-year-old Mayweather into the octagon against a champion in his debut. Whether they’d sanction any sort of bout is hard to know. He and the promotion would make money and it would all be unbelievably stupid. That much we can say with some confidence.
More interestingly, the UFC is currently in the midst of negotiating its next TV deal. Their seven-year contract with Fox is set to expire very soon, and while UFC brass wants another huge TV deal (in the range of $450 million per year), the market is really not in their favor. Fox’s initial offer was less than half of what the UFC wanted, and it’s highly unlikely they’ll get what they’re asking for. That said, one way to drum up the price would be to continue making splashy news during negotiations (which are apparently ongoing). Even though Floyd running it back against Conor is near impossible, the mere possibility of that big dopey cash cow is tantalizing.