Mayweather finishes off McGregor in 10th round

LAS VEGAS - Floyd Mayweather Jr. stopped UFC champion Conor McGregor on his feet in the 10th round Saturday night, ending the boxing spectacle of the summer with a harsh dose of reality.

The most unusual megafight in years surprised many as it went longer and was more competitive than expected when an unbeaten, five-division world champion boxer took on a mixed martial artist making his pro boxing debut.

While McGregor (0-1) had the T-Mobile Arena crowd behind his improbable quest, Mayweather (50-0) survived a rough beginning before he gradually took control. He brutalized McGregor in the 10th, landing numerous shots and chasing McGregor around the ring until referee Robert Byrd saved the Irishman and stopped the fight.

Despite losing to Mayweather, McGregor was drinking Irish whiskey and acting like he had won, while Mayweather was reminiscing about his early days as a fighter and looking forward to a different kind of business at his strip club.

There were smiles all around, and with good reason. They pulled off an audacious gamble Saturday night, and all that was left to do was to count the money rolling in.

Mayweather estimated his take at $300-350 million. McGregor said he likely would clear $100 million, and said he had his accountants on speed dial to make sure it was all collected.

Fans of both boxing and mixed martial arts had to be happy, too. They got a reasonably entertaining fight that settled nothing about the two sports but embarrassed neither fighter.

McGregor was a big winner because he was reasonably competent as a boxer in his first pro fight. He actually controlled the first few rounds, and was never off his feet despite taking a beating in the late rounds.

Mayweather eventually figured him out, and exposed him for the boxing novice he was. McGregor didn't become king of boxing like he predicted before the fight, but he won millions of new fans and will now likely return to the UFC as its unquestioned star.

And Mayweather?

Well, 50-0 has a nice ring to it, passing the 49-0 record of Rocky Marciano that serves as a benchmark in the sport. He got a knockout that helped erase the stain from his fight with Manny Pacquiao two years earlier. And, after earning nearly $1 billion in his 21-year career, he can get on with his varied businesses and maybe even train a few fighters himself.

"You won't see me in the ring anymore," Mayweather said. "Any guy calling me out, forget it. I'm OK. I had a great career."

Indeed, he did, winning every time he got into the ring and building his brand wisely so he could make a fortune off of it. No boxer has ever marketed himself like the man who calls himself Money, and he can now relax and enjoy his private jets, mansions and courtside seats to NBA games around the nation.

---

Tim Dahlberg, the boxing writer for the Associated Press, contributed to this report.
 


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