Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather Jr. had been going at each other since 2015, when McGregor said something slightly rude on an American chat show, and Mayweather’s uncle publicly responded.
The bad blood continued until a fight was arranged between the UFC champion and the boxing champion, with McGregor agreeing to switch sports to accommodate it.
Mayweather Jr. was basically retired by this point (in fact McGregor would be his last fight), so the whole thing was labelled a money maker for the pair, and it probably was, but my goodness it grabbed people’s attention.
It was Paddy Power’s biggest event of the year in terms of betting volume, with an expected £200 million being wagered on the fight just on their website alone.
With three days remaining before the fight, and with odds at 1/4 in Mayweather’s favour, Paddy Power announced that, despite over 80% of the outrights placed backing the American, they would pay out before the bout began.
You can hear the man himself (yes, this really is Mr. Paddy Power, real name) explain why they have chosen to pay out early, and their reasoning is actually pretty sound:
— Paddy Power (@paddypower) August 23, 2017
It turns out that they made the right call too.
Despite all of his big talk and shouting, Conor McGregor lost the fight, although to be fair to him he lasted 10 rounds.
After taking a few hard punches Conor was no longer able to properly defend himself, and the ref ended the fight meaning Mayweather Jr. won by technical knockout.
Considering it was McGregor’s first and last ever boxing bout, and considering that Floyd Mayweather Jr. was a 49 bout undefeated veteran, the Irish UFC fighter did alright.
Nevertheless, Paddy Power were right to bet on black rather than green, even if it wasn’t very patriotic of them.