Manny Pacquiao has expressed his willingness to fight Conor McGregor.
The Filipino 8-division boxing world champion recently told FOX Sports News 500 that he was willing to fight the UFC’s two-division champion in a boxing match. Said Pacquiao:
“In boxing? In boxing (I would) but not in (UFC), just boxing.”
When asked if he had seen McGregor’s famous sparring video with a former champion boxer, Pacman replied:
“I didn’t see it [footage of Conor sparring]. But if we are talking about Conor McGregor and boxing, it’s different. Boxing is different than MMA.”
The topic of McGregor was brought up to Pacquiao because the Filipino fighting senator has been campaigning for a rematch with the retired Floyd Mayweather Jr. who famously beat Pacquiao in May 2015. But Mayweather has been drumming up a potential showdown with McGregor instead. Mayweather and McGregor have traded verbal shots for quite some time now but it remains to be seen whether both men will really end up fighting each other.
In the most recent chapter of McGregor vs. Mayweather, UFC President Dana White offered both men $25M plus PPV share but Mayweather dismissed White’s proposal as peanuts and an insult to his stature as boxing’s top money man. Mayweather has always maintained that he won’t fight again unless it would be for $100M.
As for Pacquiao, he also doubts whether Mayweather and McGregor are really serious about fighting each other:
“I don’t know if they are taking it seriously. It’s on the news but I don’t know if it will happen.”
But if it does indeed happen, Pacman doesn’t think McGregor stands a chance against Mayweather:
“I don’t think so.”
And what about if it’s he who ends up fighting the Notorious One? Pacquiao doesn’t think McGregor would be willing to stand and brawl with him:
“I’m sure he will be moving around.”
During his prime, Pacquiao was famous for being a destroyer. He stopped legendary fighters like Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales, Oscar De La Hoya and Miguel Cotto. However, Pacman hasn’t recorded a knockout since stopping Cotto in 2009. In his most recent bout, Pacquiao re-captured the WBO welterweight title by defeating Jessie Vargas by unanimous decision. Pacquiao is slated to face unknown Aussie Jeff Horn in his next bout.
Like Pacquiao, McGregor is a southpaw who packs tremendous punching power. Eighteen of his 21 MMA victories have been by knockout. McGregor once said that no fighter can take his left hand shot. After his iconic 13-second destruction of Jose Aldo in 2015, Conor Mac coined his signature statement:
“Nobody can take that left hand shot. He’s powerful and he’s fast but precision beats power and timing beats speed.”
Pacquiao has power and speed, but would McGregor’s precision and timing beat Pacman inside the boxing ring? Or will he be moving around the ring, as Pacquiao says he would be?