Mayweather and McGregor have been bantering back and forth for the past year while hinting at a showdown between the 49-0 retired boxer and the current UFC lightweight champion
According to Shannon Sharpe on the latest episode of “Undisputed”, White may have unwittingly done something else by touting McGregor as the bigger superstar when compared to Mayweather’s current drawing power.
Sharpe says by telling McGregor what he’s worth in a fight against Mayweather, who pulled in some of the most massive numbers in boxing history, White may have just given the Irishman a ton of negotiating power ahead of his next bout in the UFC.
“If I’m Conor McGregor, I say I appreciate that Dana White because for the longest time you told me and you told everybody that would listen and every fight fan in the UFC, Ronda Rousey is the biggest draw. You just went on television or you went on radio and said ‘Conor McGregor is the ‘A’ side’,” Sharpe said. “So whether I fight Floyd Mayweather or not, it’s going to cost you $25 million plus a back end part of the pay-per-view going forward.
“That’s all he’s done. Conor McGregor’s going to double down now. I want to talk to you about a piece, but going forward it’s $25 million for me to step into the ring and then we’ll negotiate the back end on pay-per-view buys. Because if I’m the ‘A’ guy, I don’t really need Floyd. Because I’m the ‘A’ guy. People are coming to see me.”
Following his last win over Eddie Alvarez in November, McGregor said he was looking to sit down with the new UFC owners at WME-IMG to ask for a larger piece of the pie including a potential ownership stake in the company.
Add to that, Ronda Rousey’s loss to Amanda Nunes at UFC 207 may have brought an end to her career or at the very least took away some of the drawing power she would maintain for another fight, which only further fuels McGregor’s demands.
As of now, McGregor hasn’t made clear what he plans to do next while taking time off awaiting the birth of his first child in May but Sharpe believes White just gave him even more leverage going into his next bout whether that’s against Mayweather or not.