Boxing

Conor McGregor on Floyd Mayweather: “I turned him into a Mexican tonight; he fought like a Mexican”

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Conor McGregor

Photo via @ImRo450

Conor McGregor is no stranger to the controversial and borderline racists comments when it comes to his pre-fight hype. Prior to last night’s bout with Floyd Mayweather, McGregor made a potentially racist snipe at the boxing champ when he referred to him as “boy” during a presser in the weeks leading up the bout.

Although the comment itself may not seem to be racially charged, it does harken back to the days of slavery in the United States. Moreover McGregor maintained he didn’t mean to for the comment to have any racial undertones.

Fast forward to the immediate wake of McGregor’s 10-round loss to Mayweather via TKO, the MMA champion mentioned that made his 40-year-old counterpart “fight like a Mexican tonight”.

Now although the comment may sound as if it has a bigoted tenor, many in the combat sports world say that it’s nonetheless a compliment.

Ariel Helwani of MMAFighting.com said the statement itself was a “100-percent compliment” to Mayweather hinting that it only needed some context.

So here’s the context…

McGregor came out of the gate with a strong showing and certainly won the first three rounds of the fight. This in turn perhaps forced Mayweather to adjust his style a bit after McGregor started to ware down in the later rounds. In most cases, the 40-year-old Mayweather throughout his career would wait for his opponents to open up as the matched progressed and then begin picking away eventually leading to a win. However in theory, McGregor’s aggressive onset may have forced Mayweather to be a little more aggressive than he’s use to which is somewhat typical among Mexican fighters in the boxing world.

So were the comments racist? No they weren’t and as Helwani was eluding to they just needed some context. However as Dan Gartland of SI.com mentioned, it does resinate out of a stereotype.

Mayweather’s style in the second half of the fight, then, could be considered one stereotypically associated with a Mexican fighter. Sure, Mexicans like Oscar De La Hoya have employed such a style with great success but a fighter doesn’t have to be from Mexico to box that way, as Kazakhstan’s Gennady Golovkin does. So while McGregor’s comment wasn’t overtly racist and certainly didn’t have malicious intent, it’s still based on a stereotype.

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About Adam Hernandez

Adam Hernandez is the founder The Majors Sports Network. He also currently serves as the co-editor of PistonPowered.com.

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