“I do think it’s going to happen,” White said on Conan O’Brien’s talk show. “I think it’s going to be a tough deal, because obviously a lot of egos involved in this deal and a lot of people, so that always makes it tougher. But on the flip side, there’s so much money involved, I just don’t see how it doesn’t happen.”
White acknowledged what Mayweather had long since repeatedly noted: that a fight with McGregor would generate huge public interest and therefore massive revenue. Mayweather, who insisted that his September 2015 win over Andre Berto was the final fight of his career, has more recently claimed that he wouldn’t return to the ring for less than $100 million, and it’s apparent that he thinks the popular Irishman can get him that payday.
McGregor has also been clamoring for the fight, although he has kept a lower profile of late as he has been on leave from the UFC, with his girlfriend expecting to give birth to their first child in late April or early May. That has left Mayweather to publicly pound the drum, including on Saturday, when he said, “For Conor McGregor, I’m coming out of retirement, just to fight Conor McGregor.”
“I don’t want to hear no more excuses about the money, about the UFC,” Mayweather added. “Sign the paper with the UFC so you can fight me in June.
“Simple and plain, let’s fight in June. You’re the B side. I’m the A side. We’re not here to cry about money. I’m tired of all this crying about money and saying you want to fight. You’re blowing smoke up everyone’s, if you want to fight, sign the paperwork.”
Combat-sports fans recently got excited about reports that Las Vegas’s T-Mobile Arena had reserved the date of June 10, possibly for the fight. When TMZ Sports caught up with White earlier on Wednesday, though, he shot down that rumor, saying the arena’s move “has nothing to do with the Floyd-Conor fight.”
Given that McGregor won’t be available for MMA fights at least until May, his involvement in a boxing match in June, against one of the sport’s all-time greats, no less, does seem highly unlikely. Fox Sports cited sources in reporting that a September date for the fight was much more of a possibility.
Meanwhile, White has gone from saying, as recently as January, that the chances of the showdown taking place were about the same as him “being the backup quarterback for in the Super Bowl, to declaring that it’s all but a done deal.
“It doesn’t make a lot of sense for my business, but I would never keep Conor from making that kind of money,” White told TMZ.