This Saturday night the world of boxing and mixed martial arts (MMA) will collide like never before when the self-proclaimed greatest boxer of all time, Floyd Mayweather, puts his 49-0 winning record on the line against a complete boxing novice in the shape of the Irish superstar and two-weight MMA World Champion, Conor McGregor.
Such a huge and unusual sporting event has drawn massive interest from fans of both sports, as well as drawing a massive amount of interest from punters who are keen to try and win some cash from bookmakers with their bets on this huge event.
You can tune in to the fight in the UK on Sky Sports Box Office for the princely sum of £19.95, although UK fans should be aware that the fight is not scheduled to get underway until 3am on Sunday morning (and it could be later than that depending on how long the fights before this take to be completed).
Of course, such a spectacle ensures that there will be millions of pounds wagered on the fight and with interest in the fight now huge, we are going to preview the clash and give you our verdict on how the fight could transpire. Then we are going to take a look at our two top sports betting providers, Bet365 Sport and Skybet in order to find some of the best value betting offers on both sites for the fight.
First though, let’s take a look at the fight itself and how we think the fight will unfold.
Mayweather Vs McGregor – Preview
While the hype for this fight has ensured a feverish few weeks of anticipation amongst many fans eager to see the two gladiators face off against each other, the fact that the fight is even on at all has drawn criticism from many experts, especially those within boxing who feel that this could well be the biggest mismatch in the history of the sport.
They do have a point. Other than training as a boxer as a child, McGregor has been an mixed martial artist for all his career and while boxing is his main strength as an MMA star, so many of the other weapons he uses against his opponents in that discipline will be unavailable to him in the boxing ring.
That would be a problem against even a half decent professional, but McGregor is going toe-to-toe with one of the greatest boxers that has ever lived and who may well be the first modern boxer to reach the milestone of 50 wins undefeated in his career. Add to this Mayweather has in his career defeated over 20 boxing World Champions and the size of the task facing McGregor becomes apparent.
It is precisely because of this that so many experts have labelled the fight something of a sham, but that hasn’t stopped fans and many other experts looking forward to what should be an incredible battle. Can McGregor bridge the divide between the sports and defeat an all-time great at his own game in his first professional fight? It is a storyline that perhaps even Sylvester Stallone would consider too far-fetched for his Rocky series of films in my view.
However, the fans seem to think it will happen. When the fight was first announced Mayweather was a huge odds on favourite, with one Las Vegas bookie quoting 1/25 on a Mayweather victory. Since then though McGregor’s odds have tumbled as Mayweather’s have drifted and while the American is still a very comfortable favourite, the distance between the two in terms of odds is now far smaller than it once was.
It all sets up an intriguing night ahead in Las Vegas on Saturday and with Mayweather proclaiming he will be spending each night in his Strip Club in the city until the fight, is he running the risk of taking McGregor too lightly? Here’s is how I see the fight going.
Mayweather v McGregor – Fight Analysis
The Irishman is an inch taller than Mayweather and has a two-inch advantage in terms of reach but more than the tale of the tape, what matters most here is how each fighter will approach the task at hand. My gut feeling is that both fighters will want to play to their strengths and here they are well matched. McGregor is a natural aggressor who wants to come forward from the start, Mayweather is more cautious, one of the best defensive boxers in the history of the sport.
McGregor has a reputation as a fast starter, he knocked Jose Aldo out in 13 seconds to claim his first MMA World Title in the UFC and I think he will feel his best chance is to crowd Mayweather from the start and keep the pressure on the boxer. The problem he faces is that more talented boxers have tried to do this to McGregor (most notably perhaps, Ricky Hatton and Manny Pacquiao) and all have failed.
I see McGregor being the main aggressor for the first 2-3 rounds at least and by this point, I expect Mayweather to have picked up the rounds by outboxing his opponent and moving away from trouble while scoring points with sharp jabs and crosses to keep McGregor at a distance from him. At this point, I think the Irishman will likely want to try and step up the pressure to get closer and I think this will be his downfall.
My view is that after 2-3 rounds of trying to get close to Mayweather, McGregor will push too hard and Mayweather will take advantage to get past the Irishman’s defences and end the fight either in the 4th or 5th round.
What are the best bets available for this prediction?
The great news is that you can get some great deals for this bet with both Bet365 Sport and Skybet.
Skybet are currently offering a Price Boost from 4/1 to 6/1 on Mayweather winning in rounds 1-4 and that is certainly an offer you could take advantage of if you think the American is likely to finish the fight early (as he has said he will in the lead up to the fight).
You can also get a Request-A-Bet offer of Floyd Mayweather winning in rounds 1-8 which is a 6/5 shot with Skybet at the moment.
With Bet365 Sport you can back Mayweather to win the fight by KO or TKO at current odds of 4/5. That’s almost even money and a better bet than the 2/7 available on a Mayweather victory. However, if you are looking for something a bit better value, you could back Mayweather to win in the fourth round at odds of 16/1, while a fifth round victory is also 16/1.
Alternatively, you can bet with Bet365 on Mayweather winning in the 4th, 5th or 6th rounds at odds of 5/1 and I think of all the bets available with the company, that is the best value one for most punters, if you think my analysis of the fight is accurate.
So if you are looking for a top quality bet on this massive boxing match up on Saturday night, head on over to Skybet or Bet365 Sport now to place your bet.