Conor McGregor is a betting underdog – but not an outlandish one – in a potential boxing match against legendary pugilist Manny Pacquiao, according to odds posted this week in Las Vegas.
Shortly after news broke Tuesday that Pacquiao has signed with Paradigm Sports Management, which also reps McGregor, the Westgate SuperBook opened betting on the potential bout, installing the 41-year-old Filipino as the -600 favorite (bet $600 to win $100), with the Irish MMA star priced as a dog of about 4/1 odds.
For the skeptics who don’t believe a McGregor vs. Pacquiao fight is a realistic possibility, there was also plenty of doubt that McGregor would step into the boxing ring with Floyd Mayweather. That bout took place in August 2017, and the odds tightened dramatically in the lead-up to the event. A 5/1 underdog when the fight was announced (and about four times longer than that when betting opened), McGregor went off at about +275. Mayweather, an under-valued favorite at -350, dominated en route to a 10th-round TKO victory.
For what it’s worth, the Westgate is also dealing a Pacquiao (+150) vs. Mayweather (-180) rematch, as well as a second fight between McGregor (+550) and Mayweather (-800).
As for a second professional boxing match for McGregor, his manager Audie Attar says he’s “serious. … He said it. That’s something that I can tell you, if he says something he has interest in, it’s likely going to happen” (via MMA Fighting).
McGregor and Pacquiao, in fact, have been teasing a fight for a couple of years. Pacquiao posted a picture of McGregor on Instagram in November 2017, and even before he returned to the UFC last month with a resounding victory over Donald Cerrone, McGregor said a bout against Pacman was close to being made.
Mayweather-McGregor pulled 4.3 million pay-per-view buys, second all-time behind the 2015 fight between Pacquiao and Mayweather. While the prospect of another attempt in the squared circle by the Notorious One may be revolting to boxing purists, do we really see either of these two passing up the tens of millions of dollars they’re sure to make if it happens?
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