And it is back. The self-proclaimed retired Floyd Mayweather is again teasing (referencing Omar Little from The Wire) a match in the octagon on social media. Obviously, in doing so, he is hinting at a match with Conor McGregor.
Just a day before, McGregor played along posting the phrase he often did to promote their lucrative boxing match this past summer:
At this point, these posts are nothing more than an experiment to draw attention to the two inactive fighters, but it shows there is potential here.
The UFC is approaching its two-year anniversary for when it was sold for an unprecedented $4 billion to WME-IMG. At the time, the sport was coming off a period where they were breaking records and bursting into the mainstream with stars like McGregor and Ronda Rousey (now a full-time member of the WWE), of course, this is no longer the case.
As we’ve seen with Tiger Woods in golf, these individual sports are as popular as their top stars, and right now, the UFC is lacking just that.
The only buzz the UFC has created over the past year is topping itself in record low ratings. In April, the UFC on FOX hit its lowest ratings in their history only to be topped again just this past Saturday (excluding the Aug. 27, 2016, show that was preempted in many markets). It was also a lackluster year in PPV events.
With the UFC in the process of negotiating a new rights deal, the only way for the company to regain the power in negotiations is producing a massive fight.
And unfortunately for them, they do not have that matchup on their current roster. Therefore, they must give in, and give Mayweather and McGregor anything they want to fight each other in the octagon.
Very few things in the world of sports are certain in 2018, but these two fighting in any ring is sure to make a lot of money… a lot.
The last bout between the two reportedly made over $600 million, and a rematch this time in the UFC has a chance to make just as much. Remember, this one would attract the group buying to see the villainous, undefeated Mayweather surely get taken out in a sport he has no chance in.
The issue, however, is unlike boxing, the UFC takes most of the money. The fighters do not make nearly as much in a more regulated sport like the UFC.
And anyone who follows Mayweather on Instagram or has heard him talk for just a minute knows there is only one thing that moves him: money. It will take an unforeseen amoung to get “Money” Mayweather inside the octagon with someone as dangerous as McGregor, but it is safe to assume with his recent teases, he would at least consider it for the right dollar amount.
That is why Dana White and the UFC must make it happen even if it means giving the two fighters a ridiculous amount of the profit. McGregor wants ownership, Mayweather is now in the promotion business, if the UFC can satisfy those needs as well, it will be a win-win-win for all three parties.
The UFC must go out of their comfort zone and make this fight happen.