Floyd Mayweather may be coming out of retirement to fight UFC Featherweight and Lighweight champion, Conor McGregor.
“We’re getting very, very close.” Mayweather told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith. It was confirmed that McGregor arrived in Las Vegas on Monday evening. Mayweather lives and trains in Vegas.
Anthony Marnell, the Nevada State Athletic Commission chairman, told ESPN that he is aware of the negotiations. However, he also noted that the fight faces several challenges.
“There is a lot of real stuff going on. It still seems like a long shot, but when there is a lot of money involved, people tend to figure it out. There are a lot of cooks in the kitchen, but I’m not sure if we’re going to eat. The Nevada Athletic Commission, in my experience, has always been well-briefed by all parties on an event or potential event that may take place in Las Vegas. We are aware of conversations and information that has been disclosed and not disclosed in the media. Whether these conversations will get to a point that a fight happens, I can’t tell you.”
Mayweather is confident that the fight will happen, as he mentioned previously during an interview with Showtime during a boxing match in Vegas.
“I believe the fight could happen. He’s a tough competitor and has proved throughout the years in the UFC that he can fight standing up.”
Stephan Smith also spoke with Mayweather on Saturday night at the NBA game between Oklahoma City Thunder and the Golden State Warriors, furthering reinforcing his belief that the fight will happen.
While McGregor is under contract with UFC, he is eager to fight Mayweather. He has never fought in an official boxing match, he obtained his boxing license in the state of California in December of last year.
Marnell believes that the biggest negotiation issue will be the pay.
“I’m confirming that real people are having real discussions. I’m also telling you my opinion as the Nevada Athletic Commission chairman that a lot of things need to get done in order to see something like this come together because there are so many parties that want to get their hands on the pot. Maybe it will get figured out, but it’s going to be hard when everyone is declaring they want $100 million. That’s not what I said — that’s what they’ve said. That’s their quotes, not mine. If everyone wants $100 million, that’s a lot of $100 millions to go around.”
If things go accordingly, the superfight will be announced within two weeks.