What blueprint for a McGregor shocker would look like

LAS VEGAS — Conor McGregor has vowed to be unconventional and ruthless when the UFC champion challenges Floyd Mayweather in a boxing match Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena. It’s the only way he has a chance to win, according to several fighters contacted by The Post.

“The only way he can win is to go flat out from the first bell and throw punches and take every risk in the world and try to hit him,” Jeff Fenech, the former world boxing champion and Hall of Famer from Australia, said. “He can’t beat Mayweather any other way. He’s got to take a full-on risk and be prepared to get knocked out because he has to try to knock Mayweather out. That’s the only way he can win.”

“He’s got to throw 100 punches in the first round and not give Mayweather any respect,” former world champion Austin Trout said. “That’s always been the blueprint. But it’s easier said than done.”

McGregor figures to be 15-20 pounds heavier than Mayweather on fight night after getting down to the 154-pound limit for Friday’s weigh-in. McGregor, who will have a two-inch reach advantage, needs to make size matter.

“He’s going to be 20 pounds bigger, and he can punch, and he’s unconventional,” Fenech said. “He’s got to square up a little bit so he can use all his weight and power, and again he’s got to take risks. He’s got take Mayweather out of his comfort area. He’s got to rough him up and take Mayweather out of his game.”

The MMA superstar, who will be competing in his first professional boxing match, also might be the most unconventional fighter Mayweather has faced, which could work in his favor early.

“He’s going to punch from all different angles,” Fenech said. “I don’t care who you are. We can all land a punch. Floyd has this amazing persona that he can’t be hit. Everybody can be hit if you want to hit somebody bad enough. You just have to take that risk and not worry about getting hit.”

There’s also the confidence factor. McGregor has been supremely confident all week. He believes whatever he says will happen and has predicted an early knockout.

“At the start, I said if you go through every opponent that Mayweather has ever fought, they would all beat McGregor,” Fenech said. “But confidence and all that means a lot. He has a lot of pride and thinks he can win. He’s not going to be wary of Mayweather.”

Trout said McGregor has to make Mayweather second-guess himself, something few have been able to do.

“I think with Mayweather, you have to get in his head,” Trout said. “Watching the [Miguel] Cotto fight, I saw a look in his eye like he was thinking, ‘This guy is coming for me.’ Same look when he fought Shane Mosley. We haven’t really seen Mayweather have to rely on heart. McGregor has to make it that kind of fight.”

McGregor also has to land his powerful left-hand that has dropped so many MMA opponents.

“There’s no doubt if he hits him with his left hand, he’s going to put [Mayweather] down,” said Heather Hardy, a women’s boxing champion who made her MMA debut in June. “But you can have the strongest bullets in the world, but if it doesn’t hit its target, it’s useless.”

Even with that blueprint, most of those who have been in the ring expect Mayweather to win.

“God has got to come down and touch his hands and want McGregor to win,” former champion Zab Judah said. “If Conor McGregor can beat Floyd, it means he can beat me, Oscar De La Hoya, Canelo [Alvarez] and all the other fighters Floyd has beaten.”

Hardy put it this way: “It’s like a college kid going into a spelling bee with a kindergarten kid, and even if it was the dumbest college kid and the smartest kindergarten kid, it wouldn’t matter.”

McGregor has predicted a second-round knockout. It’s really his only chance to win.

Source: http://nypost.com/2017/08/25/what-blueprint-for-a-mcgregor-shocker-would-look-like/

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