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Floyd Mayweather: We offered $15 million to Conor McGregor for boxing match

Adrien Broner v Ashely Theophane - Fight Announcement
Floyd Mayweather challenged Conor McGregor again Wednesday.
Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Floyd Mayweather Jr. isn’t all that invested in returning to boxing. If he does, though, the one fight that stands out above the others — at least to him — is against Conor McGregor.

“The only thing that I’m probably interested in is probably the Conor McGregor fight,” Mayweather said on ESPN’s “First Take” on Wednesday. “I’m a business man and it makes more business sense.”

Obviously, if that fight ever happened (and there are many obstacles in front of it), it would be one of the biggest pay-per-views of all time. Mayweather is the PPV king of boxing and McGregor has set records in the UFC, eclipsing even Mayweather’s most recent fight against Andre Berto multiple times when it comes to pay-per-view buyrate.

In November, McGregor was granted a boxing license in California, which many took as a way to gain leverage with the UFC toward a potential future Mayweather bout. As long as McGregor is under contract with the UFC, it is the only organization that can promote him in combat sports. And the UFC has never been a fan of co-promoting, certainly not in a different avenue like boxing.

“If you made $5 million, I’m willing to give you $10 million,” Mayweather said of McGregor on ESPN’s “SportsCenter” later Wednesday. “If you made $10 million, I’m willing to give you $20 million. And within my career, I made $800 million. I can’t speak on what he’s getting paid, because when it’s all said and done, Conor McGregor has to answer to somebody. He has a boss. Floyd Mayweather don’t have a boss.”

Mayweather made more than $100 million in his win over Manny Pacquiao in 2015. He made $32 million against Berto. McGregor, though the UFC’s biggest historical draw, has not approached those numbers. His biggest disclosed purse was $3 million for the second Nate Diaz fight in August, but McGregor makes much, much more in bonuses and pay-per-view revenue.

Mayweather, 39, said on “SportsCenter” that his team offered McGregor a $15 million purse for the bout and he would make $100 million.

“We tried to make the Conor McGregor fight,” Mayweather said. “They know what my number is. My number was a guaranteed $100 million. That was my number. We’re the A-side. I don’t know how much money Conor McGregor has made. I’m pretty sure he hasn’t even made $10 million in an MMA bout. We were willing to give him $15 million and then we could talk about splitting the percentage, the back end percentage on pay-per-view.”

Publicly, McGregor has stoked the fire, lobbing barbs out Mayweather often. McGregor’s manager Audie Attar told ESPN last month that he doesn’t know if Mayweather is truly serious about a fight.

"I don't know if Floyd is enjoying the retirement life too much, if it's a PR stint to keep the fun going of what he has going on in the boxing world," Attar said. "Ultimately, I think we'll find out soon enough if [his interest in fighting McGregor] is real or not.”

Las Vegas gossip columnist Norm Clarke, formerly of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, reported last week that the Mayweather-McGregor fight will happen, per his sources, because there’s simply too much money on the table for all parties involved to turn down.

“Conor McGregor keep telling everybody he wants the fight — let’s make it happen,” Mayweather said on “First Take.”

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