The Friday Five: May 24th, 2019

1.  Conor Thinks He’d Beat Mayweather In A Rematch

“Now you’ve got to respect that. That’s what a crafty veteran can do,” McGregor said in praise of “Money” Mayweather. “He can switch his style. He switched it to that old Mexican boxing style. Mexican boxing style is where you put your elbows in tight and this knuckle you put it just above the forehead and connect it and walk forward with heavy pressure. He never fought like that in his entire career. He was forced to fight that way cause he was getting beaten when he was fighting his old way.

“The approach caught me off guard. I was not prepared for it. I was not used to it and he walked me down and ended up getting the stoppage. The referee I felt could have let it go, I would have liked to see the end of the round, get my breathing back, get a little more comfortable. I know he’s not going to come into my game. I would love to rematch him under boxing rules again and have that knowledge and have my sparring partners come forward with that style also and see where we goes. I believe I would win. Actually, there I go again with the fake humbleness — I know I would win.”

2. Wilder Won’t Promise KO Of Joshua

Credit: Sean Michael Ham/
Mayweather Promotions

On Saturday night, Deontay Wilder did something faster than Anthony Joshua, and that’s knocking out Dominic Breazeale.

“You know, we can compare all we want,” Wilder said during the post-fight press conference for his successful WBC world heavyweight title defense.

“But, you know, at the end of the day, when both of us get in the ring, you don’t know what’s gonna happen. I can’t say that I’m gonna knock him out. I can’t say he’s gonna knock me out. We just have to see when that time comes, and see what happens.”

3. UFC Parent Company Expected To Go Public

After rumors circulated earlier this year, Endeavor is officially filing to become a company on the New York Stock Exchange.

Endeavor, who purchase the UFC in 2016, filed paperwork this week with the Securities and Exchange Commission to be listed on the Exchange and have an initial public offering by the end of 2019.

First reported by the Hollywood Reporter, Endeavor looks to raise around $500 million for a potential $6 billion initial valuation.

This move may mark the end of Dana White’s tenure with the UFC, as White was not a fan of the league going public when it was owned by the Fertitta brothers, saying they’d not go public “while I’m here anyway.”

That may change, as White has signed an extension with Endeavor to help lead the company into the new era that features a long-term broadcast and pay-per-view deal with ESPN.

4. Lobov/Malignaggi Almost Brawl At Presser

FIGHT SPORTS was live for the official announcement presser for Artem Lobov and Paulie Malignaggi’s showdown for the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship from Midtown Manhattan.

 

Close up of face-off where Malignaggi spits on Lobov:

 

Lobov’s Exclusive post-conference comments to FIGHT SPORTS

Prior to Lobov’s BKFC debut in April, Malignaggi confronted the fighter during a media workout at Mendez Boxing in New York City, slapping the former UFC fighter.

 

Malignaggi has taken issue with Lobov, because of Lobov’s closer friendship with former UFC double champion Conor McGregor. McGregor enlisted Malignaggi as a sparring partner prior to his 2017 fight with Floyd Mayweather. Soon after they sparred, photos and video were leaked showing McGregor dropping the former world champion boxer, which incensed Malignaggi.


5. Fury: I Went To ESPN To Make Wilder Rematch Bigger

In preparation for his ESPN debut, Tyson Fury made the rounds today at the worldwide leader, days after his rival Deontay Wilder leveled Dominic Breazeale at Barclays Center.

Adorned in a suit featuring every lineal heavyweight champion in boxing history, Fury took time to take a jab at the WBC world heavyweight titleholder.“I don’t see Deontay Wilder on here,” Fury pointed out to the panel during his segment on ESPN’s First Take. “If he ever wants to be on this thing, he’s got to beat me.”

Fury earned his claim at the lineal title in 2015, defeating then unified world champion Wladimir Klitschko. While Fury continues to consider himself the lineal champion, many in boxing see him abandoning that title when he abdicated or was stripped of the unified belts in the midst of his mental health and substance abuse issues.

Yet, since late 2017, Fury has been on the comeback trail, fighting three times in 2018, taking two victories and going the distance with Wilder in an instant classic.

While Fury and Wilder were negotiating for a rematch, Fury would shift gears and sign a co-promotional agreement with Top Rank and ESPN, while Wilder would stay with Showtime and Premier Boxing Champions.

Asked about why he would sign to fight on the Disney owned property, Fury claimed that his true intentions are to make his rematch with Wilder bigger.

“On Showtime, it wasn’t viewed by that many people. I think it was only 325,000 (PPV buys),”Fury said on First Take. “A world heavyweight title fight with two of the most colorful, charismatic champions in the past 50 years… it needs to be built bigger.

“I believe this platform on ESPN will give me that option to make it a massive global fight, not only 300,000 (-plus) in the United States. I think another 450,000 viewed it in the United Kingdom. We need to make it bigger.”

While Fury’s debut on ESPN comes on ESPN+ against mostly unknown Tom Schwarz, Fury feels that taking this step will lead to a Wilder-Fury II.

 

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