It’s safe to say Floyd Mayweather
and Conor McGregor aren’t Ronda Rousey’s favourite people, with
the former-UFC bantamweight women’s champion dismissing both men
motivated by money.
But what did the best female boxers and UFC fighters in the
world think of the matchup before the fight happened on 26
August and who did they place their money on at
Let’s take a closer look…
Claressa Shields – female super middleweight WBC and IBF
Unlike Rousey, Claressa Shields is a long-time fan of her
compatriot Mayweather. Again, unlike many fans and pundits,
McGregor’s “ruthless and reckless” trash-talking in the run-up
to the fight made her a fan of McGregor as well. In fact, she
thinks the Irishman “should totally be a comedian”.
However, Shields never had any doubt who would win the
multi-million dollar matchup.
“I'm going with Mayweather all the way”, she said before the
bout. Shields went on to say she felt the only chance McGregor
had of winning was if “he lands a lucky punch in the first two
As it turns out, that wasn’t far off McGregor’s game plan, as he
went in early to try and knock out the undefeated former boxing
champion. Mayweather said after the fight that he had
anticipated this and just let McGregor tire himself out.
Amanda Nunes – UFC women’s bantamweight champion
Brazilian mixed martial artistAmanda Nunes is currently the one
to beat in the UFC women’s bantamweight division. Nunes wasn’t
as sure of the outcome as Shields, saying that “McGregor might
beat Mayweather”. She also said that “anything can happen”,
which is exactly what she found so fascinating about an MMA
fighter getting into the square ring with one of the best boxers
of all time.
Michelle Waterson UFC Strawweight fighter (Ranked number 6)
Ricky Hatton didn’t give McGregor a chance,
a lot of UFC fighters were more open-minded, with Nunes and
Michelle Waterson being prime examples.
Waterson said that it was McGregor’s “creative footwork” that
would make for an interesting exchange between the two men. She
likened the mismatch to “having a dance partner who’s on a
different rhythm to you”, with the thought being that this could
throw off Mayweather. And while Waterson said she’d “love for
McGregor to win” and “wouldn’t put it past [him]”, she
continued, “on any given day, anyone can get rocked”. This seems
to echo boxer Shields’ statement about it taking a lucky punch
for McGregor to beat his American opponent.
Heather Hardy - WBC women’s boxing super middleweight
champion and MMA fighter
As both a boxer and an MMA fighter, Heather Hardy is
uniquely-placed to understand the differences in the two
disciplines. When asked about the challenges facing McGregor as
he prepared to step into the boxing ring, Hardy says that the
Irishman is “having many of his [tools] taken away”.
When comparing her own foray into MMA, she said that it was
“impossible” for McGregor to win because he was going straight
in “at the highest boxing level”. Indeed, Hardy would’ve been
unlikely to have any success by going straight into a fight with
Nunes, for example.