Ex-UFC Champion Linked to Potential $5 Million Boxing Match

Floyd Mayweather, Conor McGregor, UFC

Getty (R-L) Floyd Mayweather Jr. throws a punch at Conor McGregor during their super welterweight boxing match.

UFC superstar Robert Whittaker is in talks with the newly crowned boxing cruiserweight world champion Jai Opetaia for a crossover fight.

In August 2017, the world of combat sports witnessed a historic crossover bout between Irish superstar Conor McGregor and unbeaten boxing legend Floyd Mayweather. It was the first time we got to see an MMA fighter take on a boxer at the highest level and earn the biggest payday of his life.

After dethroning the former IBF cruiserweight king Mairis Briedis earlier this month, Opetaia is targeting a match with the fellow Aussie athlete.

Dean Lonergan, Opetaia’s manager, confirmed they were in talks with Whittaker and hope to put on the event sometime in the first quarter of 2023.

Fans down under could soon get to see Australia’s version of McGregor v Mayweather if Whittaker agrees to pen the $5 million offer.

“Yes, I’ve had some talks with Rob Whittaker’s manager and he is open to it,” Lonergan told Daily Telegraph.

“It would be the biggest fight we could make in Australia from a pay-per-view, publicity, and credibility point of view.

“Jai is now Australia’s only boxing world champion and Rob is a UFC star who is acknowledged as one of the toughest fighters the world has ever seen, so it’s a fight that would be of interest.

“They have sparred in the past and if the finances are right for both guys, Whittaker’s management indicated that Rob would definitely be keen on it.” (transcribed by Daily Mail)

Whittaker Wants To Challenge Israel Adesanya for the Title Again

The former middleweight champion last took to the cage for a rematch against the reigning 185 lb king Israel Adesanya at UFC 271 in February. Their headlining bout went the full distance with Adesanya adding another successful title defense to his record.

Whittaker is set to face Marvin Vettori in the promotion’s debut event in France at UFC Paris on Sept. 3. He would need to complete the remaining two fights on his current contract with the UFC before he can make the crossover match happen.

In another interview last month, the 31-year-old Sportsmail of his ambitions to get the gold back again and handing Adesanya his first defeat at middleweight.

“My goal is obviously to get that fight with Israel, to try and get that belt back, especially with the way our second fight concluded,” Whittaker said. “The plan is simple: to beat everyone in front of me and eventually they will run out of people and he will have to fight me. I feel like it is inevitable if we stay the course.

“I am the hunter and I want it. He saw after that last fight that I wanted it, I am coming for it, I am not going to stop until I get it and it’s scary.”

Floyd Mayweather Jr v Conor McGregor: The Money Fight

Billed as The Money Fight and The Biggest Fight in Combat Sports History, Mayweather v McGregor brought in $4.3 million and is the second highest-selling pay-per-view of all time.

A rematch was rumored recently, but Dana White ensured that McGregor’s return to fighting will be inside the cage and not in the boxing ring on The Jim Rome Show.

McGregor’s recovery from the horrific leg injury he suffered in July 2021 seems to be well. His head coach John Kavanagh informed that “The Notorious” had returned to training in all facets of mixed martial arts.

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