When the idea was initially tossed around among various media outlets, a boxing match between Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather seemed like an absurd pipe dream. Crossover fights between high level boxers and high level MMA fighters have been rare enough over the past 20-odd years without the considerations of a UFC contract or negotiations between two of the most profitable faces in combat sports.
And yet, the thing happened. Three parts spectacle, one part sporting contest, but McGregor vs. Mayweather got made. And while the UFC lightweight champion lost via TKO in the 10th round, his gameness, the dramatic narratives, and the huge piles of cash that the event generated left the ‘Notorious’ Irishman as a prime target for other boxers looking for a big-money superfight in the ring.
The latest of these? Former multiple time – and multiple weightclass – world champion Oscar De La Hoya. The ‘Golden Boy’ left his pro boxing career behind in 2008, on the heels of a loss to Manny Pacquiao. Since then, he’s carved out a prominent position for himself as a boxing promoter, setting up events that showcase a large stable of talent, including Canelo Alvarez, Miguel Cotto, and Jorge Linares among many others.
While De La Hoya was a vocal detractor of Mayweather vs. McGregor – owing primarily to Mayweather being on the receiving end of a massive payday rather than one of his own fighters – he’s now making a pitch to be the next man to be the boxing half of an MMA vs. boxing spectacle.
“I’ve been secretly training,” De La Hoya teased in a recent interview, “Secretly training. I’m faster than ever, and stronger than ever. I know I could take out Conor McGregor in two rounds. I’ll come back for that fight. Two rounds.”
That call-out was apparently enough to catch the interest of at least one gambling website. BetDSI.eu has opened a line on McGregor vs. De La Hoya, giving McGregor favorite odds at -125 to Oscar’s +105.
As of November 1st, Bovada still had a line open on McGregor vs. Malignaggi, stemming from their feud surrounding the May-Mac fight. McGregor had been sitting at +145 against the ‘Magic Man’ at -175.