It’s not quite Muhammad Ali versus Joe Frazier. It’s closer to Rocky Balboa versus Clubber Lang, a staged stare down between two actors, featuring Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather.
The UFC champ, McGregor, and the undefeated boxer, Mayweather, are hyping their Aug. 26 boxing showdown. They exchange insults, boast about their accomplishments, take turns predicting knockouts and pretend they want to fight each other. Right now!
It’s all designed to sell pay-per-views, to push profits into the hundreds of millions of dollars. After opening in Los Angeles, the fighters brought their hype show to Toronto for the second of four staged promotional stops. It was, again, ridiculous. But it’s working. Interest in the fight is growing, with analysts now wondering if McGregor really has a chance to knock Mayweather back into retirement. That’s not likely to happen, but it’s mind-boggling to think how many people will be watching.