One of boxing’s most respected analysts, Max Kellerman has admitted that he was wrong to have been so dismissive of Conor McGregor’s skills prior to his fight with Floyd Mayweather this past Saturday night in Las Vegas.
“Let me tell you what’s going to happen, Conor McGregor will not land a single punch on Floyd Mayweather,” Kellerman had stated on ESPN’s ‘First Take’ show when the fight was first announced. “Not one punch.”
Kellerman stuck rigidly to that prediction throughout the entire build up to the fight, but after watching McGregor not only land punches against the 40-year-old undefeated boxing superstar, but also win several rounds, he admitted today that he’d got it wrong.
“I was wrong to say Conor McGregor wouldn’t land a punch. He landed several actual punches cleanly,” Kellerman confessed on ‘First Take’ today. “He won a few rounds early when Floyd hadn’t started fighting yet, which is amazing to me.”
Aside from eating a healthy slice of humble pie, Kellerman also lavished further praise on the UFC lightweight champion.
“That was the best version of what that fight could possibly have been,” Kellerman declared on ‘First Take’. “And I want to start of by saying, Conor McGregor deserves enormous credit. He is an exceptional fighter. An exceptional fighter. Even among champions he stands out.”
Kellerman echoes a number of other boxing pundits and fighters who have gone on record as saying they were surprised at how well McGregor did against Mayweather in the early rounds.
Even Mayweather himself acknowledged backstage after the show that the level of McGregor’s ability had taken him aback.
“He’s a hell of a fighter standing up — he kind of shocked me,” Mayweather stated.
Of Course, there will always be some detractors out there, but for the most part it appears that both McGregor and MMA’s reputation remains intact despite his 10th round TKO loss to the finest boxer of his generation, and indeed it’s quite possible that his stock has grown, so the future still appears to be bright for ‘The Notorious’.