Floyd Mayweather: Mayweather vs. McGregor Media Conference Call Replay

Floyd Mayweather answered questions from the media on Thursday about his upcoming boxing bout against UFC champion Conor McGregor during a conference call. Listen to what Mayweather had to say.

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Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor square off on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

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Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson vs. Jorge Masvidal Targeted for UFC 217

Two of the top strikers at 170 pounds are about to face off at UFC 217 in New York

Two-time title contender Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson is expected to meet Jorge Masvidal on Nov. 4 at the card taking place in Madison Square Garden.

Sources close to the matchup confirmed the news to MMAWeekly.com on Thursday. Masvidal also teased the bout via his Twitter account as well.

Thompson (13-2-1) is making his return to action following two fights against welterweight champion Tyron Woodley. While Thompson fought to a draw with Woodley in their first fight, he came up short in the rematch so now he’ll look to climb back into the title picture when he fights in November.

Prior to his two fights with Woodley, Thompson had won seven in a row including victories against Rory MacDonald, Johny Hendricks and current interim middleweight champion Robert Whittaker.

Masvidal (32-12) has enjoyed new life since moving to 170 pounds after spending the majority of his career as a lightweight.

The American Top Team fighter has gone 3-1 in his past four fights including a devastating knockout against fan favorite Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone with his only recent loss coming by way of split decision to former title contender Demian Maia.

Thompson vs. Masvidal is the latest fight headed to UFC 217, which will feature two title fights as Georges St-Pierre makes his long awaited return to action against middleweight champion Michael Bisping while Cody Garbrandt puts his bantamweight belt on the line against former teammate T.J. Dillashaw.

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Floyd Mayweather Slams Conor McGregor’s ‘Extremely Dirty’ Moves in Paulie Malignaggi Sparring Session

There were only 20 seconds of sparring footage released from Conor McGregor’s 12 round session with former champion Paulie Malignaggi, but his opponent on Aug. 26 was definitely watching.

On Thursday, Floyd Mayweather commented on the footage that showed McGregor popping Malignaggi with some hard punches including one short right hand that appeared to knock the retired boxer to the mat.

Malignaggi has contended that it was actually a shove from McGregor on the back of his neck that pushed him to the ground, which was one of several fouls he claimed the UFC lightweight champion committed during their sparring session.

In fact, McGregor was deducted two points by referee Joe Cortez during the 12-round session for moves committed outside of the rules.

“My thoughts is I think it was real interesting but a lot of illegal rabbit punching behind the head, a lot of stuff that was illegal. A lot of grappling, a lot of wrestling, a lot of illegal shots. That’s just my opinion,” Mayweather told MMAWeekly.com on Thursday during a media conference call.

“I’m pretty sure the referee’s going to be fair on both sides. I want the referee to be fair and treat both competitors, myself and Conor McGregor, treat us both, be even and treat us fair. I just want to have a good solid fight.”

Earlier this week, the Nevada State Athletic Commission assigned referee Robert Byrd as the third man in the ring to call the action between Mayweather and McGregor when they meet on Aug. 26.

Byrd has a reputation for being hands off in most of his fights while typically voicing his objections to the fighters rather than getting physically involved in breaking apart the clinch during exchanges.

That might seem to favor McGregor, who is stepping into his first professional boxing match, but Mayweather is confident that the referee will do his job for the safety of the fighters.

Still, Mayweather can’t help but take a jab at what he believes were several illegal moves committed by McGregor in the sparring match with Malignaggi.

“I truly believe the ref’s going to do his job. The referee’s job is to make sure he’s keeping the bout clean,” Mayweather said. “I want to have a good fight. Like I said on numerous occasions building up to this fight, I’m coming straight ahead so he don’t have nothing to worry about. I look forward to following the Queensberry rules of boxing and I’m pretty sure he looks forward to following the Queensberry rules of boxing.

“He had [referee] Joe Cortez in his training, which is a great thing. Even though he had Joe Cortez in his training camp, I still seen him being extremely dirty. My job is not to worry about the referee. My job is to go out there and fight and let the referee do his job.”

Despite those alleged fouls, Mayweather also managed to take a shot at McGregor for touting his success against Malignaggi, who is retired and suffered a knockout loss in his last fight in March.

“I mean last time I checked, some may call it a knockdown, some may not call it a knockdown. At the end of the day, it only counts once you get under the lights,” Mayweather said about the sparring session. “That’s just the gym.

“We are sitting down here judging Paulie [Malignaggi], a guy that’s been retired and been commentating and traveling the world and not going to the gym at all going in there with a guy that’s just working up. An athlete period that’s just working up, everyday, everyday and obviously it shouldn’t even have went 12 rounds with a young guy that’s an athlete.”

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Emeka Ifakandu Says LFA 19 Bout Against Steven Merrill ‘Going To Be One of the Easiest’

Prior to turning professional earlier this year, bantamweight prospect Emeka Ifekandu had a lengthy amateur career that saw him fight over a dozen times in the course of three years.

According to Ifekandu, his time in the amateur ranks proved a huge on his pro career, which itself has yielded three straight victories.

“It helped me a lot,” Ifekandu told MMAWeekly.com. “I didn’t know anything was done, so it was really great. The experience I had has paid off as a professional.

“It helped me decide whether or not I wanted to continue fighting. I lost some and I won some, but all that taught me something and it helped make me how I fight now.”

The biggest thing that the amateur ranks taught Ifekandu is that how having a well-rounded game helps his strengths and allows him to better use them in his fights.

“As an amateur fighter I never had any wrestling training – none of the gyms I was at had a wrestling coach – so every fight I was afraid of being taken down,” said Ifekandu. “Because of that, my striking suffered.

“It was during that eight months (between amateur and turning pro) that I was able to do wrestling for the first time. It was a whole different ball game. Having confidence to fight anywhere has opened up my striking game and it has allowed me to get some knockouts under my name.”

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Ifekandu (3-0) makes his return to the LFA for the first time since April to take on Steven Merrill (4-0) in a main card 135-pound bout on Friday in Sioux Falls, S.D.

“I’ve seen a couple videos on (Merrill), and I’ve seen his weaknesses and his strengths, and I think he’s going to be one of the easiest fights so far that I’m going to get,” Ifekandu said. “I think that it is a gift wrapped up for me.

“Just jab him, kick him, and punch him – box him – and I don’t think he’ll get out of the first round. Him being trouble for me? I don’t think so. As long as I don’t make any mistakes I should come out with a knockout in the first round.”

While he’s on his fourth fight of 2017, Ifekandu is in no mood to slow things down, as he wants to close out the year as actively as he can.

“I’m looking forward to an October fight with the LFA,” said Ifekandu. “I told my coach if I win this fight and I don’t have any injuries, I want to fight again in October, and if I win that fight, I want to fight again in December.”

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Ken Beverly Predicts ‘Great Fight’ Against Nick Gherts at Bristol Motor Speedway

Looking back on his two wins so far in 2017, lightweight prospect Ken Beverly couldn’t be more pleased with how things have turned out.

First against Nick Baker in March at Warrior FC and then again in May versus Steven Haag at Warrior FC versus Valor Fights, Beverly was able to pick up wins with solid performances.

“I had a really great training camp and worked hard with some good guys, so I ended up finishing (Baker) in the first round,” Beverly told MMAWeekly.com. “With the Steven fight, I went out there and beat him all three rounds and there was nothing he could do to stop me.”

With his wins, Beverly was able to impress Bellator enough that when it came time to fill out their special Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race pre-event, he was one of the fighters they reached out to.

“No one knows a lot about Eastern Kentucky fighters, so it’s a big opportunity for me and a couple guys from Kentucky,” said Beverly. “When they said they were thinking about me, I said I’d take it, I didn’t care who the opponent was, and that I’d fight anyone.”

Beverly (5-2) takes on fellow promotional newcomer Nick Gherts (7-2) in a feature 155-pound bout on Saturday in Bristol, Tenn.

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“I’ve watched (Gherts’) highlight reels and some video, and he’s a great submission guy,” Beverly said. “He has some pretty good stand-up. I predict a very great fight between us. I can’t wait to get in there and showcase with him.”

With an opportunity to fight for a promotion on the national stage, Beverly has a lot to look forward to, but he’s got his eyes set on each fight as it comes.

“I like to focus on one fight at time,” said Beverly. “After this fight I have another fight in September, but I’ll just focus on one at a time. If you plan ahead and you’re worried about more opponents and stuff, you’re not focused on right now.”

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Report: Fabricio Werdum vs. Derrick Lewis on Tap For UFC 216

Fabricio Werdum and Derrick Lewis may clash this October. MMAFighting.com’s Ariel Helwani sent out a tweet revealing that Werdum vs. Lewis is being targeted for UFC 216. The event takes place inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Oct. 7. An interim lightweight title bout between Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee is expected […]

Dana White: I Expect Conor McGregor to Knock Floyd Mayweather Out

Dana White has made his pick for Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather. It should come as little surprise that the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President is picking McGregor to defeat Mayweather on Aug. 26. “Notorious” and “Money” will clash inside the T-Moblie Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. During a conference call, White said he believes […]

Stephen Thompson vs. Jorge Masvidal in The Works For UFC 217

UFC 217 is shaping up to be quite the card and now Stephen Thompson vs. Jorge Masvidal may be added to the event. Sources close to MMAWeekly.com have said that the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is targeting a welterweight clash between Thompson and Masvidal. The bout is set to take place inside Madison Square Garden […]

UFC Releases Statement on Nick Roehrick’s Potential USADA Violation

Nick Roehrick is facing a suspension from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). Roehrick is a light heavyweight on the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) roster. He made his debut for the promotion back in July. He was finished by Jared Cannonier in the third round. The UFC has released a statement revealing Roehrick’s possible violation of […]

Floyd Mayweather Says McGregor Was ‘Extremely Dirty’ During Sparring

Floyd Mayweather saw the clips of Conor McGregor’s sparring session with Paulie Malignaggi and he’s crying foul. “Money” is set to compete against McGregor on Aug. 26. The “super fight” will be held inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. It’ll be aired live on Showtime pay-per-view. During a recent conference call, Mayweather was […]