conor mcgregor: i turned him into a mexican

conor mcgregor lost his much hyped boxing debut (first fight) to floyd mayweather in a 10th round tko.  during the post fight euphoria, after congratulating mayweather, mcgregor bragged to showtime’s jim gray

 i turned him into a mexican tonight. he fought like a mexican.

turn into means convert.

why would mcgregor say that?  cody brunner at yahoo sports explains

mayweather has been derided throughout his career (especially the latter portion of it) for his propensity to play it safe and simply outbox his opponents….and there’s been a considerable amount of backlash to his style – especially for his 2015 fight against manny pacquiao.

derided means criticized. throughout means this criticism has been for floyd’s entire career. a propensity is an inclination or tendencyplay it safe indicates a more conservative gameplan. backlash is a negative reaction.

cool esl practice :) richyrocks on youtube

floyd mayweather has been derided for his style, but this is a really cool picture of what he does (did).

on the other hand…

mexican fighters have long been considered by boxing pundits as some of the toughest, most exciting fighters in the sport due to the forward-charging, all-action style of many of their most famous stars…. julio cesar chavez sr. to oscar de la hoya to erik morales to canelo alvarez….mexican boxers have long thrilled boxing audiences with their aggressive approach in the ring.

have long been considered is present perfect passive voice–>mexican fighters is the object and the subject is pundits which are expert analysts. tough means strong, resistantdue to means because of. thrilled means excited. approach is technique, method.

julio cesar chavez & oscar de la hoya toe to toe

two of mexico’s toughest: julio cesar chavez & oscar de la hoya

on, lyle fitzsimmons also recognizes that

branding a fighter as “mexican” is universally considered high praise

brand means identify, label. praise is admiration.

canelo alvarez and gennady golovkin pose to promote their pending fight

u could say when canelo fights ggg it will be like a mexican fighting a mexican. if that comparison doesn’t offend u. (reuters)

fitzsimmons points out that another non-mexican boxer associated with the mexican approach is canelo alavarez‘s next opponent

popular multi-belt champ gennady golovkin—born and raised more than 6,000 miles away in kazakhstan—has wholeheartedly embraced the “mexican style” …..[he’s] an aggressive stalker with power in both hands [who] walks opponents down with a violent intent

wholeheartedly means completeley, enthusiastically.  a stalker follows and harasses a victim. walk down is an offensive boxing technique.

i'm not a stalker........

being a stalker in a boxing ring is respected. being a stalker in society is frowned on.

last weekend mayweather adopted this more combative strategy in contrast to his usual defensive style, the yahoo article reports that he

pushed forward and went toe-to-toe with the irishman for much of the bout, not backing down from the heavier and stronger fighter. when mcgregor started to gas out, mayweather smelled blood and stayed right in his face.

toe-to-toe is at close range, right in front of each other. a bout is a fight. back down means retreat.  gas out means get tired, and smell blood means mayweather could sense mcgregor’s vulnerability.

mayweather & mcgregor going toe to toe

so clearly mcgregor, after getting hit in the head enough times for the referee to stop the fight, was complimenting floyd on successfully adopting the fierce, fun-to-watch style of mexican boxers.  so why was there a mild freak out in the media and on social media?  cody brunner opened his article with the mcgregor’s quote and then the question

sounds pretty bad, right?

not really. the issue isn’t that mcgregor compared mayweather (favorably) to mexicans. the issue is that americans automatically assume that mexican is negative–an insult. this reflects not only the widespread (extensive) racism that donald trump exploited in order to get elected and continues to cultivate, but also an overwhelming (really big) ignorance about mexico in general.

mexico does independence day very, very well. ¡VIVA MÉXICO! (

the reality is that mexico does A LOT of things well, boxing being one of them.  believe it or not, mexico and mexican are sometimes used outside the context of xenophobic stereotypes, the war on drugs or socioeconomic maladies (problems).

on the broadcast of the fight i was watching, right when mcgregor started to make his comments, tv azteca cut to a commercial. no shit. totally oblivious (no idea what happened).

while conor mcgregor was claiming that he turned mayweather into a mexican, tv azteca’s audience was listening to these controversial words.

finally, in reference to the final sentence of the bleacher report article…

for one farewell night in las vegas, mayweather was “mexican money.”

….let’s keep it real. a farewell is a formal goodbye, and money is mayweather’s nickname. but calling floyd  “mexican money” devalues his nickname by more than 90%.  it takes about 18 pesos to make a dollar.

beautiful mexican money

mexican money is beautiful, but fighters prefer dollars. (shutterstock)

what do u think? agree or disagree, share your opinion under leave a reply




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