McGregor changes from slurs to kudos

LONDON • Conor McGregor has heaped praise on Floyd Mayweather Jr, despite losing their super fight last weekend.

It may be little surprise that the mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter has warm feelings for the boxer who helped him earn a minimum of US$30 million (S$41 million) from their bout, but the build-up had been stormy with the two exchanging unpalatable slurs.

"Congrats to Floyd on a well-fought match," the Irishman wrote on Instagram . "Very experienced and methodical in his work. I wish him well in retirement. He is a heck of a boxer. His experience, his patience and his endurance won him this fight hands down.

"I always told him he was not a fighter but a boxer. But, sharing the ring with him, he is certainly a solid fighter. Strong in the clinch. Great understanding of frames and head position."

McGregor added that he believes the 40-year-old could compete in mixed martial arts.

"He has some very strong tools he could bring into an MMA game for sure," wrote the Irishman.

McGregor said that fighting for 30 minutes had been a challenge as MMA fights last a maximum of 25 minutes. 

"Getting to 12 rounds alone in practice was always the challenge," he wrote. "A little more time and we could have made the 12 cleanly, while under more stress, and made it thru the later rounds in the actual fight."

Mayweather is estimated to have earned a minimum of US$100 million from the fight, and announced his retirement from boxing after his 10th-round TKO victory over McGregor.

He ended his career with a perfect 50-0 record.

THE GUARDIAN

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 02, 2017, with the headline 'McGregor changes from slurs to kudos'. Print Edition | Subscribe