“WEIGHT doesn’t win fights, fighting win fights,” Floyd Mayweather declared after coming in four-and-a-half pounds lighter than the 154lb limit for his contest with Conor McGregor. The Irishman tipped the scales at 153lbs and, it seems, the increasingly ridiculous Mayweather-McGregor event is really going to happen.
“He’s full of water, he’s not going to last with me,” a maniacal McGrgegor screamed. “That’s the worst shape I’ve ever seen him in.”
McGregor cut a very different figure only moments before. As his buoyant army of Irish fans swigged beer, removed their ‘Fook Mayweather’ t-shirts and waved their ‘I Am Boxing’ flags, a bespectacled McGregor made his way to the stage but the shoulders-back McGregor strut was largely absent. Licking his lips, and forcing smiles to his fans, the underdog resembled a man who had endured a torturous weight-making process.
Mayweather, dressed in white t-shirt and grey sweatpants, looked far more at ease during his entrance. This is the first time he’s weighed in somewhere other than the MGM Grand for 11 years, and he danced in front of McGregor as he reached the stage.
“I’ve been here before,” said Mayweather, who was expected to come in heavier against a naturally bigger opponent. “I know what it takes when it’s a fight of this magnitude. Tomorrow it comes down to the fighters. Weight doesn’t win fights, fighting wins fights.”
Mayweather’s appearance on the scale sparked McGregor into life. The two went head-to-head and McGregor screamed into Mayweather’s mouth, the whiskers on his beard brushing the veteran’s face. Not since Ricky Hatton visited these shores in 2007 has a Mayweather opponent invaded the American’s space with such noise and energy.
“It won’t go the distance, mark my words,” Mayweather said as McGregor devotees screamed their displeasure. “The fans cannot fight for you, it comes down to the competitors.”
How many fans will be in attendance tomorrow has been a talking point all week. Tickets for tomorrow’s event remain on sale and, with less than 24 hours remaining before the opening bell, just under 1,500 tickets are available via the Ticketmaster website. That’s not a disaster considering the cost of entry ($2,500 is the cheapest seat in the steep-seated arena) but marks a significant difference from the sold out 2015 Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao showdown at the MGM Grand, when touts were struggling to lay their hands on tickets let alone sell them.
While today’s weigh-in was full to capacity – the majority were McGregor fans – it’s likely the exceptionally high cost of tickets has put off travelling punters who had already forked out for flights and hotels. While we can expect the Las Vegas Strip to be swamped with boxing fans this weekend, how many will find their way into the T-Mobile Arena remains to be seen.
There have been reports that unsold tickets were appearing on StubHub, where tickets with a face value of $5,000 were being snapped up for around $1,500.
Cruiserweights (200lbs), 10 rounds
Andrew Tabiti, 197.5lbs
Steve Cunningham, 198lbs
Light-heavyweight (175lbs), 12 rounds
Nathan Cleverly, 174.25lbs
Badou Jack, 174.5lbs