Two of the biggest names in combat sports have continued their simmering verbal rivalry after Floyd Mayweather Jr. responded to Conor McGregor, who recently declared himself unhappy with Money for citing his name to argue racism remains a factor in the fight game.
Last month, Mayweather told FightHype.com "racism still exists" after contrasting the reaction he receives to that of UFC superstar McGregor. This led The Notorious to claim "people [are] buried in the desert for less" when speaking at a recent UFC 197 press conference, per Marc Raimondi of MMA Fighting.
Mayweather has taken an aggressive stance with many rivals in the past, but he adopted a nonchalant approach in responding to McGregor's comments and told FightHype.com, "That's life":
I never said that the guy, McGregor...I didn't say I had anything against Caucasians...or white Americans, or white people or Irish. All I said is this, in this world, racism still exists. But I'm not racist, that's all I said. If he got offended, that's life. Sometimes people will get offended by certain things people say. Just me, I have tough skin. I'm built for anything.
Appearing to not know who the reigning UFC featherweight champion is, Money made sure to check McGregor's name before giving his response, clearly not taken in by the Dubliner's rampant hype.
McGregor is preparing for a UFC lightweight championship bout against Rafael dos Anjos on March 5, but that didn't stop him from weighing in on Mayweather's controversial claims. Raimondi provided his reply in full:
I am a multicultural individual. I take from all cultures. Look at me. I am a product of many cultures as a young, Irish man. I know he wasn't saying that I am that person, but it put me in that bracket. I did not appreciate that one bit. There's people buried in the desert for less than that.
Former pound-for-pound boxing champion Mayweather evidently isn't worried if he upset McGregor, another controversial figure in combat sports who garners widespread attention in interviews, just as Money did.
Both fighters book their billings because of a rare amount of talent in their respective fields, but personality goes a long way in boosting the careers of those willing to go that extra mile outside the ring—or, in McGregor's case, Octagon.
It's difficult to deny many receive McGregor's demeanour as endearing and hard to dislike, but then Mayweather has his own substantial amount of supporters, just as The Notorious does "haters."
According to Black Sports Online, UFC poster child McGregor continues to prove Mayweather right, that he holds a certain privilege in being able to say certain things:
Many fans will hope this battle comes to a head, with Mayweather stepping out of retirement for a bout between the two, but his nonchalant response suggests he's not interested.
Pretty Boy may not have intended any personal offense, but Mayweather still feels there's a deeper-rooted racism issue in the industry that has to be addressed.