Boxing legend Oscar De La Hoya revealed he was training for a comeback to boxing just about two weeks after officially challenging retired UFC superstar Conor McGregor to a boxing match.
De La Hoya, 47, tweeted directly to McGregor on June 7, “@TheNotoriousMMA whenever you’re ready.”
But McGregor didn’t reply to the showdown offer, so the world went dark with news or information about what the Irishman might be doing next after retiring from UFC fights.
Now De La Hoya announced during an interview with Ring TV’s Cynthia Conte that he’s already training to fight again and that he’s hoping to land a “real fight” at either 154 or 160 pounds.
McGregor faced Floyd Mayweather at 154 in August 2017 in the second best-selling pay-per-view event in boxing history.
De La Hoya retired following an eight-round stoppage loss to Manny Pacquiao in 2008 after capturing multiple world titles in six different weight classes.
The Hall of Fame boxer told Ring TV he was inspired by Mike Tyson’s recent comeback plans and that he’d be watching Tyson closely to see how the 53-year-old legend’s body responded to being in a real fight.
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McGregor Accepted De La Hoya’s Previous Challenge in May
McGregor accepted De La Hoya’s previous challenge to a boxing match in May after it appeared the UFC star had heard enough of the former boxing champion saying he could stop McGregor in just two rounds.
On May 7, McGregor tweeted, “I accept your challenge, Oscar de la Hoya.”
But De La Hoya responded by saying he never actually challenged McGregor and was only saying what he thinks would happen if the two men engaged in a boxing match.
A month passed, and the intergenerational superfight seemed to be dead. But De La Hoya told McGregor he was ready whenever the Irishman was a month later.
After his recent interview with Ring TV, it would seem De La Hoya is even more ready than he was on June 7.
McGregor Keeps Teasing Return to Boxing
McGregor has kept teasing a return to boxing over recent months.
The popular icon spent his Father’s Day weekend at Crumlin Boxing Gym in Dublin and has posted several Instagram stories since retiring from UFC action that show the fighter training for boxing.
While McGregor lost via 10th-round stoppage to Mayweather in 2017, his performance was good enough that some have suggested he might have a bright future in the sport if he ever decided to move over to the boxing ring for good.
Plus, there’s that sparring video of McGregor knocking down former boxing world champion Paulie Malignaggi from the fighter’s training camp for the Mayweather superfight three years ago, as well as the opening rounds of the Mayweather showdown itself, which suggest that might be true.
Besides McGregor is 16 years younger than De La Hoya, and naturally the larger man.
McGregor vs. De La Hoya would be a wildly successful financial boon for both fighters, and McGregor’s chances against a fighter that’s been retired for so long go way up compared to him facing legitimately active world champions like Pacquiao.
McGregor vs. De La Hoya isn’t set in stone, but it could be on its way.
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