If you happen to be watching the Mayweather vs. McGregor World Tour press conferences thinking ‘Man, it seems a lot like these guys are cutting pro wrestling promos,’ you are not alone. It’s probably a new experience seeing a real fight with promotion like this, and that’s partially because there are few trash talkers better at their craft than Floyd and Conor.
The other big ingredient is the boxing style press conference. With the UFC, everyone shows up and the press asks questions. In boxing, people give speeches. And when you let Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor give speeches, they apparently end up looking a lot like something you’d see on Smackdown.
But Dana White denies what you’re seeing is an intentional attempt to take a page out of the WWE playbook.
“These are two of the best s**t talkers in both sports,” he said leading into the third World Tour press conference in New York. “I don’t think it’s from the WWE playbook, it’s both of their personalities. I mean, if I had two other guys that were promoting this fight, neither one of them could hang with either one of these guys when it comes to the s**t talk. That’s what these guys are known for.”
“Obviously they’re both great fighters, but what they’re really well known for is their level of s**t talking. So yeah exactly, you couldn’t just say hey let’s take a page out of the WWE playbook because some guys have it, most guys do not.”
It’s still crazy to see something that feels right at home in WWE going on in a (quasi) legitimate fight. Pro wrestling has always taken from prize fighting and put a fun house mirror spin on things. It’s just been so long since we’ve seen this particular type of monologuing that it’s seen as derivative of pro wrestling, where as pro wrestling used to be originally seen as derivative of prize fighting. We have officially gone full circle, man. What a crazy trip.