Dana White says Conor McGregor’s trash talk ‘absolutely bothered’ Floyd Mayweather on World Tour
There’s exactly one month to go until Floyd Mayweather steps into the boxing ring for his showdown with Conor McGregor on Aug. 26 in Las Vegas.
It was just two weeks ago when Mayweather and McGregor engaged in a war of words on stage during a four-city, worldwide tour to promote their upcoming fight.
Over the course of stops in Los Angeles, Brooklyn, Toronto and London, Mayweather and McGregor went back and forth at each other with all sorts of insults being hurled at each other during the course of the World Tour.
McGregor has built a reputation for his mental warfare leading into fights and many of his past opponents have admitted after losing to him that the words he spoke absolutely impacted their performance inside the Octagon.
UFC president Dana White, who had a front row seat to watch the entire situation unfold during the world tour, says he commends Mayweather for keeping his cool while McGregor attacked his style, his wealth and just about anything else that was fair game during their exchanges on stage.
That being said, as much as Mayweather pretended that McGregor’s words didn’t hurt him, White says there’s no way the outspoken Irishman didn’t get a few digs in that absolutely got to the 49-0 boxer.
“What Floyd was an absolute professional about — in a fight when you get hurt to the body or somebody hits you with a shot that hurts you, you try to play it off like it didn’t [hurt]. The stuff that Conor was saying, nobody’s ever said that stuff to Floyd Mayweather in public. Ever,” White said when speaking to ESPN this week.
“And Floyd sat there and took them on the chin and acted like it didn’t bother him. He’d drink his coffee or he’d mess around on his phone and talk to his daughter who was coming and helping him with whatever was going on, on the phone. He tried to play it off like that stuff didn’t bother him. Floyd’s a human being. It bothered him but he played it off very well.”
There was an incident on the final day of the tour when McGregor was addressing the crowd when he grabbed Mayweather by the head for a moment during his tirade that resulted in White nearly jumping out of his seat because he thought a brawl might break out right then and there.
Fortunately, Mayweather laughed off the physical altercation and cooler heads prevailed before anything serious could take place.
Once again, White says that Mayweather stayed professional during those exchanges but he knows for a fact McGregor was getting under his skin with everything he said.
“Even the last day, which I apologized for, when Conor grabbed him on the top of his head, like kind of slapped him on his head, Floyd took it and acted like Conor never touched him. It was interesting,” White said.
“He’s trying to shrug it off. Say what you want, do what you want, you’re not bothering me, you’re not getting under my skin. It’s being a true professional in the mental warfare game and everything that you’ve said to me isn’t bothering me and you just touched me in front of millions of people, that didn’t bother me either. But you know it did, it absolutely bothered him.”
The world tour ended without any serious altercation taking place and now Mayweather and McGregor aren’t scheduled to come face-to-face again until they meet in Las Vegas during fight week leading up to their showdown on Aug. 26 at the T-Mobile Arena.