Conor McGregor may have been caught off-guard by the format laid out for his first press conference with Floyd Mayweather in Los Angeles, but last night in Toronto he came prepared to make it his own.
This was McGregor in vintage form and from the moment he was invited to speak at the podium he commanded everyone’s attention, helped along by the fact that it appeared from the crowd’s reaction that they were almost entirely there to support the Irishman.
‘The Notorious’ used that to his advantage by inviting the sea of fans in attendance to join him in yelling at the top of their lungs, “F*ck the Mayweathers!” multiple times, and they were only too happy to oblige.
In a bold move McGregor then turned his attention to Showtime executive Stephen Espinoza who was sitting on stage, venting his fury at the fact he’d had his mic turned off yesterday by yelling into the mic inches from the TV bigwig’s face that he was, “a little weasel, I can see it in your eyes.”
Mayweather was the main target of McGregor’s one-man roast though and he dealt ‘Money’ a crushing blow when he first poked fun at the 40-year-old’s age, attire and alleged education deficiencies.
“You’re 40 f***ing years of age. Learn to dress,” McGregor said. “You’re carrying a schoolbag on stage. What do you need a schoolbag for? You can’t even read!”
That same bag McGregor had made fun of beccame a key prop later on when Mayweather took center-stage to deliver his speech.
Struggling to match the energy ‘The Notorious’ had brought on the mic, Mayweather reached out to the crowd, took an Irish flag and began posing with it.
It’s not clear where Mayweather was going with this, but McGregor seized the moment to grab the boxing superstar’s bag and began rifling through the contents, before mocking him for only having $5,000 inside.
He then warned Mayweather that if he did anything with the flag then he wouldn’t be getting his belongings back, and that proved to be check mate, with ‘Money’ finally handing him the flag, which McGregor promptly threw back at him.
Mayweather’s best moment came when he urged McGregor to bet his entire pay cheque that he would win the fight, but the UFC champion didn’t miss a beat before agreeing and telling him to draft up a contract.
Mayweather had earlier attempted to emphasize who the bigger earner was on the fight, claiming that McGregor only earned $3 million for his last UFC bout, while boasting that he himself would be earning a nine figure sum for their blockbuster showdown in Las Vegas next month.
“They say I’m the m********** that can’t read. B**** I make money. You know my middle name b****'”, Mayweather told McGregor to his face.
“You owe money!” McGregor fired back.
Overall there was no doubt that McGregor won his round of the press conference with flying colors, but there’s still two more stopovers to go, starting with New York later today, and short of getting into an actual fist-fight on stage it’s hard to see how either man is going to be able to top this one.