Edris Erba/Mayweather Promotions

Floyd Mayweather: ‘I Know Right Now I’m the Biggest Name in MMA’

Floyd Mayweather discusses his potential transition into mixed martial arts and the chances he steps into the UFC Octagon before the end of the year.

Floyd Mayweather promises he’s serious about potentially pursuing a fight in mixed martial arts, especially giving his star status after an undefeated boxing career.

Mayweather retired last year after moving to 50-0 with a 10th round TKO against UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor but recently the 41-year old fighter has been teasing a move to the UFC.

In fact, Mayweather has spoken to UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley about training together to learn the ropes in MMA and he says he’s already started putting in road work to get in shape for a fight.

“I started training already. Not the physical part — endurance, as far as moving around. So far, I’ve just started running. I’m thinking about fighting in the MMA, I’ve thought about it. I started training in Miami. I look forward to fighting probably by the end of the year. We don’t know. Right now it’s a 50-50 [chance], not 100-percent. But I’ve already started training,” Mayweather told Fight Hype this week.

“Me and Woodley have spoke to each other on numerous occasions. We talked. We said we’re going to start working out, as far as he’s got a good hand game already. I’m going to be working with different guys in the jiu-jitsu world. My wrestling game, I’m going to be working with guys with the wrestling. My kicking game, I’m going to be working with guys for the kicking game. Before I get in the Octagon, I’ve got to be well rounded, all around the board.”

It was just recently that Mayweather rated his skills for MMA — giving himself a 7 out of 10 in wrestling — and he sounds very confident in how he would adjust to the sport, especially given his ability in boxing.

“Fighting is not nothing new for me. Fighting barefoot is something new but fighting is nothing new for me,” Mayweather said. “The thing is this — I could be fighting a guy that has some unbelievable jiu-jitsu skills, some unbelievable wrestling skills, but the thing is this, his chances of getting to me, the percentage of his chance to get in to lock up with me, he has to come in first to be able to get in but he may lock up with me and get wrapped up in a certain way so you don’t really know how things could play out. A lot of things could happen.

“In MMA, a lot of things can happen. It’s very, very brutal but when I signed up on day one to be a fighter, I knew it was brutal.”

As of now, Mayweather is putting his chances of fighting in the UFC at 50-50 but he’s definitely interested in starting to learn the skills that he would need to compete inside the Octagon.

Of course with all things regarding Mayweather, he says the ultimate decision may come down to money where he’s been the biggest earner in the history of boxing.

With that being said, Mayweather also knows that the fastest way to a huge paycheck in the UFC would be to rematch McGregor under MMA rules this time around.

While Mayweather says he would be interested in that fight, he revealed that if he does compete in the UFC it would have to be at featherweight and he’s not so sure McGregor could make that weight any longer.

Add to that, Mayweather once again would count himself as the ‘A’ side in any potential UFC fight against anybody — including McGregor.

“I can’t really say how things are going to play out. I’m a numbers man. If the number’s right, we can make it happen. I’m never ducking no fighters. That’s one thing about me, I don’t duck. Conor McGregor, tough vicious competitor of course, just like he feels he has dynamite hands with the four-ounce gloves on, I feel like I’ve got dynamite power with the four ounce gloves on. In our fight he said there was no way he was going to get knocked out with eight ounce gloves on. I feel like he was complaining about the ref stopping it, but if the ref wanted to really actually kill a guy, he could let that happen but he actually saved him,” Mayweather said.

“I know right now I’m the biggest name in MMA. Hands down. I know this. The second biggest name is Conor McGregor. I know this. It would be hard for me and Conor McGregor to fight because if I was to fight in the MMA, I would have to fight at 145. The weight class I would fight at is 145.”

Mayweather loves to keep his name in the headlines so he’s definitely doing that with these constant teases about moving into MMA and he even says that his company Mayweather Promotions just recently signed their first MMA fighter.

Now the question remains if Mayweather will really be tempted to test his skills in the UFC or if this will all turn out to be a lot of talk at the end of the day.

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Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the industry since 2003 with bylines on FOX Sports, CNN, Bleacher Report and numerous other outlets.
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