By the time last month's megafight between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor ended, the UFC superstar, who was dabbling in boxing for one night only, looked every bit the novice.
Despite his surprisingly quick start, McGregor put up as much resistance as a speed bag in the ninth and tenth rounds, as Mayweather tip-toed up to the edge of a devastatingly clean knockout. But "The Best Ever" never sealed the deal, instead notching a TKO when the referee mercifully stopped the fight in the 10th round of the 50th fight of Mayweather's undefeated professional career.
But that lack of an brutal knockout, Mayweather now says, was absolutely intentional.
“He has a career. You know, he still has a career. He’s still young,” Mayweather said on the “Hollywood Unblocked” podcast.
"We have to think about these fighters. Even, like, my uncle Roger. Right now, I just got a call just before I came here. He keeps walking off, wandering off. No one can find him. He ends up in a hospital. So, brain damage – it happens. It happens.”
This is clearly bullshit. Mayweather may have been taking it easy on McGregor, but if he was it was more about setting up a potential re-match than his concern for McGregor's brain.
The idea that Mayweather was looking out for McGregor's physical well being just doesn't pass the sniff test, especially when you look back at some the shots he landed to McGregor's big Irish melon.
Despite the win, which almost everyone expected, Mayweather also emphasized that, "on paper," McGregor was the favorite.
“Once again, we’re praising him. We’re not praising me. We’re praising him. Because I’m 40 years old, retired for two years. He’s 28, he’s active. I’m inactive. He’s taller, he’s bigger. Hey may not be stronger.
"He has a longer reach. He’s taller. He’s bigger. He’s younger. Youth is on his side. I’m just saying, everything on paper links on him. For me to come and be off, and really only train totally, probably three weeks .. and (I was) out every night partying.”
Now that the fight's over, Mayweather is enjoying the spoils of his three weeks of hard training. He recently bought a new Beverly Hills mansion and his Instagram is full of photos from the the palace, including a shot of an enormous wine cellar, an in-home theater and a mural of the man who helped him make the money needed to afford a place like this—Conor McGregor himself.