UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor has insisted he would knock Floyd Mayweather's head "clean off his shoulder" and "into the bleachers" if the two were ever to go toe-to-toe.
Speculation has raged recently about a potential showdown between McGregor and Mayweather, who retired from boxing in 2015 with a perfect 49-0 fight record. When asked about the prospect of coming up against the man known as Money, the UFC sensation was adamant he would knock him out.
"Honestly, my fist is bigger than his head," he told GQ Style (h/t TMZ). "I sleep people. I put people unconscious. I'm stating facts. If I hit a man, his head is gonna go into the bleachers. You understand that? If I crack that little head of his, it's gonna go clean off his shoulder and up into the bleachers."
As we can see here, the two men have done little to quell the speculation with their recent social media activity:
Conor McGregor @TheNotoriousMMA
I am in Las Vegas. Floyd has retired on my arrival. https://t.co/z9EcxBJaDr2/15/2017, 2:19:07 AM
Floyd Mayweather @FloydMayweather
https://t.co/NPBMeem6HT2/15/2017, 8:20:14 AM
Per Sky Sports, there have been a throng of reports suggesting a bout is close to happening. It'd see McGregor trade the Octagon and MMA for the sweet science; in December, the UFC champion successfully applied for and was issued a boxing license to fight in California, per Ariel Helwani of MMA Fighting.
McGregor is not wrong about his ability to "sleep people." In his professional MMA career, the Irishman has won 21 of his 24 fights, with 18 of those victories coming inside the scheduled distance; in his most recent bout he stopped Eddie Alvarez in the second round to win the lightweight crown.
Going up against Mayweather in a boxing bout would pose a testing and unfamiliar challenge for Notorious, though.
With that in mind, Chris Mannix of Yahoo Sports in unsure why the prospect of the two men meeting has generated so much buzz:
Chris Mannix @ChrisMannixYS
The clear interest for Mayweather-McGregor eludes me. McGregor destroys Mayweather in the octagon; Mayweather picks him apart in a ring.2/14/2017, 6:50:23 PM
Chris Mannix @ChrisMannixYS
Boxing/MMA both combat sports, but stylistically could not be more different. Build up for a fight would be tremendous. Fight? Not so much.2/14/2017, 6:51:11 PM
The lucrative nature of the fight is one potential reason; it's been suggested any showdown between the pair would be worth an estimated $1 billion.
Mayweather was imperious in the ring during his time as a professional boxer, consistently nullifying opponents with his supreme defensive skills and counter-punching ability.
Subsequently, if the two were ever to come face-to-face in a boxing match, Mayweather would fancy his chances of avoiding any of McGregor's best shots and be a massive favourite to come out on top.