Could Floyd Mayweather actually fight under the UFC umbrella?
According to UFC president Dana White, it’s a possibility.
"We're talking to Floyd about doing a UFC deal," White told ESPN on Wednesday. "It's real. He was talking about [boxing] Conor McGregor. Was that real? Have you heard Floyd talk about many things that aren't real? He usually tips his hand when he's in the media, and then that sh*t ends up happening.
"We're interested in doing something with Floyd. Everything is a realistic possibility. Mayweather vs. McGregor f*cking happened. Anything is possible."
Mayweather, 40, retired from professional boxing in September following his 10th round TKO win over UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor, a fight which ended up being the second-biggest North American pay-per-view in history. Showtime announced last week that Mayweather vs. McGregor sold 4.3 million pay-per-view buys and produced roughly $600 million in total revenue.
Rumors of a Mayweather deal with the UFC started from “Money May” himself. The Hall of Fame boxer claimed recently during an Instagram live broadcast that the UFC had offered him a multi-fight deal that could make him “a billion dollars.”
“They just called me not too long ago and asked me to come back,” Mayweather said. “I can come right back. If I want, I can come right back to the UFC. I can go fight in the Octagon. I can do a three- or four-fight deal in the Octagon and make a billion dollars. Remember, I'm Floyd 'Money' Mayweather, and you motherf*ckers love me.”
Mayweather retired from boxing with a perfect 50-0 record. It’s long been assumed that any discussion of him testing the waters in MMA has only ever been a pipe dream.
Still, UFC color commentator Joe Rogan echoed White’s statements regarding a potential UFC deal with Mayweather on a recent podcast.
“Dana told me that Floyd wants to make a deal in the UFC. Like, legitimately,” Rogan said. “So I texted him, I go, ‘Is Floyd really talking about fighting MMA?’ He goes, ‘Yeah, he’s f*cking crazy. I told him he’d get killed but he’s still talking about doing it.’”
As it stands, the news already attracted attention from one big name in the sport. UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson took to Twitter on Wednesday to throw down the gauntlet for Mayweather’s unlikely Octagon debut.