The Obligatory: I Just Rewatched The Fight thread.

I just re-watched the fight. I fully expected it to be more lackluster than I remembered (because the suspense of watching live can make even dull fights feel more significant). I also expected, in the cold beerless light of day, Conor to look worse than I remembered and Floyd to look more impressive.

Totally the opposite!

First, what a truly entertaining fight. Constant action, and always interesting, mostly on Conor’s part but also watching Floyd go through his strategies.

Most of all, holy shit did Conor ever do well in there! I was even more impressed the second viewing.

And Floyd struck me as looking like crap - relative to Floyd of old, and relative to what I’d expect when faced with an opponent’s first pro boxing match.

Few punches from Conor put Floyd in danger. But just watching Conor t-off on Floyd was amazing. Yes, for sure Floyd was following his game plan, starting slow to feel out Conor and to gas Conor. But no boxer can have a game plan were he literally does nothing for the first rounds. Floyd had to dodge punches, and to make some occasional offense. And it’s those moments that blew me away, when Floyd was clearly TRYING to doge Conor’s attack but was constantly being hit (not always rolling away from punches, often enough Conor knew where Floyd’s head was going to end up and met it with a punch).

And when Floyd went on offence and they exchanged punches Conor’s reflexes angles and quickness really shocked me, often beating Floyd to the punch. In fact, that was a takeaway. When Conor was fresh, so it was his peak boxing ability vs Floyd, WHEN THEY ENGAGED Conor held his own, if not more!

It’s when Conor started to fade that Floyd started being able to land more punches instead of miss or be countered. So yeah, things went according to Floyd’s game plan ultimately getting Conor to drain, but if we are just talking about the skill and talent of both guys when fresh, Conor blew me away.

And I was also impressed how long Conor actually remained competitive. He was there, continually round after round still giving Floyd angles, still landing counter-blows, even coming on strong in the 8th. That’s just insane.

And even when Floyd was in stalking mode, turning it on, while he landed some great shots, he still whiffed air a lot and just didn’t look that great, even in front of a novice gasping for air. There’s a world of difference between having a long haul game plan and ultimately carrying it out, and “carrying a guy” and anyone who says Floyd just carried Conor is full of B.S.

When it came to Floyd, I found myself much more impressed with his ring generalship, craftiness, experience, poise, all those things, far more than attributes like “speed, elusiveness” and the other things he’s shown in his previous fights. People wondered if he’d get old in this fight; I think so.

That said, Floyd’s accomplishment says so much for his skill and experience, a 40 year old guy vs a much bigger, hungry young lion in his prime. The sweet science still lives!

And I think the fight half validates the pre-fight logic that “Conor as an MMA guy can bring movement, ideas and angles that boxers have neglected” and half repudiates it.

It seemed clear that Conor really did befuddle Floyd for a while and most of the amazing success Conor had seemed due to his unorthodox (for boxing) style. And btw, I got so tired of commentators, like Pauli and others describing Connor saying “he’s so awkward it can be confusing at first” to fight Conor.

That was a belittling description by people who either didn’t understand what Conor was doing, or didn’t want to give it the full respect it deserved, almost like it’s not deliberate, but a result of Conor not knowing what he’s doing. All the switching, the weird hand movements, etc are deliberate style choices by Conor when facing a boxer, not just attempts at “doing boxing badly.”

I also “got” this time what Conor was doing in another way. I’d expected him to come out and really try to keep landing his power shot on Floyd to take Floyd out early. But Conor actually seemed to be somewhat playing a longer game too. I think Pauli was only half right in saying Conor isn’t effective because he’s not sitting down on punches, turning them over etc for power. I think it was also, within Conor’s limits, a choice - to volume punch Floyd, to stay at distance from Floyd, not putting tons into each punch allowed Conor to follow Floyd’s movement to land more often and more easily, no doubt also looking for the right moments to sneak in a power shot.

It seemed like a decent strategy that was working for quite a while.

The flip side of the “MMA guy’s different angles” is that this fight also validated something I (and others) had argued before the fight. Boxing has been honed for 100 years and if there was anything really wacky that worked, they’d still be using it. Whatever moves you do, you have to eventually get into punching range to do it, and the boxers know that range.

So unorthodox movement can only get you so far. A good example is when Floyd went into bull mode, “head on chest” fighting style and closed the gap. Boxers know how to maintain tremendous leverage in close quarters, which is why no one really relies on the kind of style Conor did, and why Conor couldn’t compete at that point. The idea that Conor was going to be the guy in the ring with the wider, more creative tool box because he was an outsider didn’t pan out; it was the boxer, drawing on all the ranges perfected over the years, who had the wider, more creative toolbox to draw from in the end.

Anyway…this fight is going to be a keeper on my PVR.

 Conor landed less than 20 punches that had any significant impact on Floyd whatsoever. He landed more rabbit punches to the back of the head than significant punches. Any other 40 year old boxer that took 2 years off would have looked much worse than Floyd did. Despite this, Floyd was still about 50x better than Conor in terms of skill. Those are the facts.

It was still an entertaining fight, and Conor did do better than I expected.

Gay

–" Conor landed less than 20 punches that had any significant impact on Floyd whatsoever. "

More than many of Floyd’s previous opponents.

–“He landed more rabbit punches to the back of the head than significant punches.”

Having just watched it, that’s the kind of underselling of what Conor did that I’m talking about. If you mean “significant punches” in terms of hard rocking shots, no one says Conor did a lot of that (and neither did many of Floyd’s pro boxer opponents). But in terms of non-rabbit punches, Conor landed a lot through the fight to Floyd’s head and body.

I can dig it Prof. Good post.

prof - --" Conor landed less than 20 punches that had any significant impact on Floyd whatsoever. "

More than many of Floyd’s previous opponents.

–“He landed more rabbit punches to the back of the head than significant punches.”

Having just watched it, that’s the kind of underselling of what Conor did that I’m talking about. If you mean “significant punches” in terms of hard rocking shots, no one says Conor did a lot of that (and neither did many of Floyd’s pro boxer opponents). But in terms of non-rabbit punches, Conor landed a lot through the fight to Floyd’s head and body.

Yep.

Yes. Conor did well. Yes, Floyd didn't look like himself.  It was a better fight than expected. 

It was still a dumb fight. In terms of an elite level competitive fight it was horrible. Freak show. 

I'm glad it's over. Hope it doesn't become a trend. I'm curious whether Conor can defend his belt, not box at an elite level. 

The Last Emperor -

 Conor landed less than 20 punches that had any significant impact on Floyd whatsoever. He landed more rabbit punches to the back of the head than significant punches. Any other 40 year old boxer that took 2 years off would have looked much worse than Floyd did. Despite this, Floyd was still about 50x better than Conor in terms of skill. Those are the facts.

It was still an entertaining fight, and Conor did do better than I expected.

"Those are the facts"

You mean those extremely vague, hyperbolic and obviosuly biased scribblings of a retard i just read?

Facts are things like "The sky is blue", what you said was a bunch of hot human mouth drivel.

Do you work for showtime? Did Conor knock you down in sparring?

watahhh -
The Last Emperor -

 Conor landed less than 20 punches that had any significant impact on Floyd whatsoever. He landed more rabbit punches to the back of the head than significant punches. Any other 40 year old boxer that took 2 years off would have looked much worse than Floyd did. Despite this, Floyd was still about 50x better than Conor in terms of skill. Those are the facts.

It was still an entertaining fight, and Conor did do better than I expected.

"Those are the facts"

You mean those extremely vague, hyperbolic and obviosuly biased scribblings of a retard i just read?

Facts are things like "The sky is blue", what you said was a bunch of hot human mouth drivel.

Do you work for showtime? Did Conor knock you down in sparring?

Oh look, another Conor fanboy in denial.

Strange. Thats exactly what happened the first time.

DERP.

I hate conor but he did extremely well. His reflexes are insane, but this was Floyd off the couch with 5 kids hanging around, and it was still easy work, even though Conor did beat him to the punch a lot.

I'd actually like to see him fight a less skilled boxer, just to see how he does compared to Floyd.

Why does this long winded conclusion not surprise me

And I think the fight half validates the pre-fight logic that “Conor as an MMA guy can bring movement, ideas and angles that boxers have neglected” and half repudiates it.

Conor is different in the way his brain and muscles work. He has a slight advantage in reflexes, length, and power over other people close to his size. He knows this, and is able to use it to his advantage. He also could not be easily hurt by Floyd and he knew it, so he was able to swarm with almost no fear. That really changes a lot of how he was able to fight the way he did. He also seemed confident he would not gas, and be able to go all 12.

His reflexes/head movement in 4,5,6 when floyd started to land were amazing. He dodged about 20 punches quit easily, leaving floyd whiffing and turning his back most of the time.

Not a fan because he disrespects his peers, and believes he has no equal, which is wrong, but he is an incredible athlete and puts on a show.

ThePunditsFluffer -

Floyd beat him with cardio, not skill.  And a lot of help from the ref (and if it went to decision, it's clear a LOT of help from the judges).  The more cardio became a factor, the more Floyd gained ground.  That counter uppercut from Conor was amazing.  High level shit

I also feel like BOTH Conor and Floyd fans should have wanted no early stoppage.  Floyd fans want those pics of Conor laying flat on the canvas.  Makes a hell of a poster.  Conor fans want the finish to be legit, not early.  Conor is known for 2nd winds.  Look at his 12th round cardio vs Paulie.  Conor has said he got tired early in that fight then recovered

Floyd was the better man though.  Not as much as the judges saw it, but still better overall. Cardio should never been an excuse at this level.  But he did get a lot of help from Mr reset referee

Dude, I really think you should try to rewatch the fight without the Conor/MMA glasses on.

The ref let Conor get away with multiple hammer fists and rabbit punches. He could have easily deducted a point but didn't even come close.

Saying Floyd didn't beat him with skill shows a complete lack of understanding of how gameplans work.  Floyd was never in trouble.  He walked through Conor's best shots.  He looked like he'd just woken up from a refreshing nap when the fight was over.  Yes, Conor gassed but he gassed because Floyd let him punch himself out and then started slowly picking him apart.  He broke Conor down with superior boxing ability.

Not sure how we can look at the 12th round vs. Paulie since the entire sparring session hasn't been released. 

I’d also gone in to the fight saying to my pals that Floyd’s level of speed, elusiveness and counter punching was going to make Conor look slow.

Conor has never impressed me as being fast - more that his timing fools you into thinking you’ve just seen a fast punch.

But he’ll no, not in this fight. When Conor wanted to he seemed wicked fast, especially his elusiveness and counter punching (before fatigue). I think part of this was also due to Floyd being slower than I expected.

Good post

I had to stop reading at Floyd was in danger lol 

Great post great fight conor made a mayweather fight entertaining back to the ufc and defend his strap!

Barry_BondsMVP - 

I had to stop reading at Floyd was in danger lol 

Apparently you stopped reading even before that (as the point was Floyd wasn’t in danger).

But congrats on representing the lazy-UGer faction.

Good post, OP.