As Urijah Faber prepares for his rubber match fight Saturday Night against bantamweight Dominick Cruz at UFC 199, the 135-pound fighter joined The Jim Rome Show and shared his thoughts on the possibility of old foe Conor McGregor possibly boxing Floyd Mayweather. Surprisingly, Faber said those who think the boxing match would never happen underestimate McGregor’s willingness to make money.
“It very well could. If he has a way to get out of his contract or be able to compete without the UFC putting the kibosh on it, I think he’d do it. The guy’s about business,” Faber said of McGregor.
Faber added that McGregor’s chances of beating Mayweather in a boxing match are slim, but not impossible.
“He is a standup guy as far as his skill set goes. That’s his strongest attribute,” Faber said. “Now is he going to beat the best boxer of all time? I doubt it. But does he have a puncher’s chance just like he does against any MMA fighter, I think so. He’s a big strong guy.”
Faber also talked about McGregor’s interesting past few months since losing to Nate Diaz in March, in particular, the McGregor vs. Diaz rematch being pulled from the UFC 200 main event. The Team Alpha Male founder said after spending time with McGregor on the Ultimate Fighter, he believes the Irishman is a good guy but may have gotten carried away with his unwillingness to promote UFC 200 completely.
“I think he just pushed the envelope too hard. He was trying to be a spoiled kid because he knows he’s got a big place in the sport right now, and he pushed back, and he pushed back, and the UFC called his bluff,” Faber said. “In retrospect, I think he would have comeback, and he would have just done the PR. They do run him around like a circus animal, and I’ve been there, as a guy who’s been a poster boy for the sport when you’re in the limelight, and the guy that is the voice.
“They push you and they get the most out of you, and they did that to the utmost with him. So he pushed back too hard, and they called his bluff, and he lost some serious cash.”
However, Faber does think McGregor deserves some preferential treatment when it comes to fight promotion with all he’s done for the company.
“I think there should be a little bit of different rules. I think you have to take into account what he had done up to that point,” Faber said. “Give some guys leeway. He was on a jet here, he was on jet there, he was doing this, he was doing that. They were running him around for years out of his life basically, and he did a good job of it.”
At the end of the day, Faber says both the UFC and McGregor are at fault for the cancelled fight and had the two sides kept their disagreement in house longer, maybe there would have been a different result.
“When it became public, that’s a different matter. When it started becoming public, the UFC had to stand their ground. If they hadn’t made such a big deal out of it, on the other hand, I think Zuffa would probably be taking it back also. I mean, if they hadn’t made a big deal out of it, they could have had that massive fight and made a bunch of money. I think both sides kind of feel like they screwed the pooch by making it a public event,” Faber said.
“Keep it under wraps. Drama needs to stay within the family, not out in the public sometimes. As much as the media loves to cover it, it’s something that could have been avoided.”
This post brought to you by Jim Rome.