Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather ensured his boxing career ended with an incredible 50-0 record as he finished off Conor ‘The Notorious’ McGregor in the 10th round of their hyped superfight at the T-Mobile Arena in Nevada on Sunday.
A fight that had been the talk of the world for months, saw A-list celebrities in attendance and a packed crowd, clearly in favour of Mayweather, weren’t disappointed and neither were the millions who tuned in to watch the fight despite a minor delay.
Due to the surge in viewers, servers got overloaded and the main event got pushed back by a few minutes but it was worth the wait.
The American boxing legend outlasted the Irish southpaw, overcoming a slow-but-measured start to finish strong and when referee Robert Byrd stopped the contest with the clock reading 1 minute and 5 seconds in the 10th round, it was all over.
Most boxing experts had called the fight a ‘freakshow’, but this was anything but, largely due to McGregor’s fast and furious opening.
The first three rounds belonged to the UFC star, who came out all guns blazing as he looked to live up to his second-round knockout prediction.
The 40-year-old Mayweather, fighting an opponent 11 years his junior, was calm and measured and it soon became apparent that the American was counting on his vast experience to weather the early storm.
As the rounds progressed, McGregor started to get tired and Mayweather didn’t let him off the hook, slowly but surely exerting his superiority.
Even at the halfway-mark of six rounds, the Irishman, on his pro boxing debut, was marginally ahead but rounds 7-10 clearly belonged to Mayweather.
Despite being called an ‘old man’ by his opponent in the build-up to the fight, Mayweather’s stamina was supreme as he took advantage of McGregor’s fading legs to land punch after punch in as the fight neared its conclusion.
As the Irishman started to wobble, the crowd got to their feet not for the first time, but on this occasion Mayweather delivered as he rained in a flurry of blows before Robert Byrd stepped in and rescued McGregor from serious injury.
In sport there can be only one winner, but despite his loss, McGregor emerged as a victor as well. The brash 29-year-old proved he can box and almost went the distance with one of the greatest boxers of all time.
Yes, Mayweather isn’t the force he was but the fact that the opening rounds went to McGregor is a commendable feat in itself and after the fight the mutual respect between the two modern-day gladiators was evident as they saluted each other’s efforts.
Mayweather confirmed this would be his final fight after lifting the gaudy ‘Money Belt’ and it would be an ideal way to walk into the sunset, after finally overcoming the great Rocky Marciano’s record of 49 wins.
For McGregor, a trip back to the UFC beckons but considering he has conquered that arena on several times already, it remains to be seen whether MMA can hold his interest for long.