Conor McGregor’s once in a lifetime super fight with Floyd Mayweather is set for September, according to the Irish fighter’s friend Abner Lloveras.
The talk has been non-stop since last year when it was suggested McGregor and Mayweather would come face-to-face.
Many have refused to believe the speculation but Lloveras claimed on American TV that a date had been set.
He told Gol TV’s ‘La Hora de la UFC’ programme said: ‘The big news that I want to tell you is that the fight between McGregor and Mayweather has a date. It will be in September.’
His comments come just days after Oscar De La Hoya branded Mayweather’s mooted showdown with McGregor a ‘farce’ that could irreparably stain boxing.
Mayweather has said he is ’90 per cent’ likely to come out of boxing retirement to face McGregor.
But former six-weight world champion De La Hoya, who lost a close points decision to Mayweather when they faced off 10 years ago, is aghast that such a potentially highly lucrative bout could go ahead.
In an open letter posted on Facebook, De La Hoya wrote: ‘To my fellow boxing fans: I write in the hopes that together we can protect the sport of boxing.
‘With each passing day, it looks more and more likely that the circus known as Floyd Mayweather Vs. Conor McGregor will be coming to town in the near future.
‘As undercard fights start to take form, athletic commissions give their blessings in exchange for millions of dollars and the fighters start counting even more cash, one group will eventually be left to make sure this farce doesn’t occur.
‘We, the fans, who are the lifeblood of our sport.
‘I fully understand the initial attraction from any fan of combat sports. McGregor is almost certainly the best pound-for-pound MMA fighter. Floyd is Floyd – the most dominant boxer of his time.
‘But success in one sport does not guarantee success in another. Far from it. And let’s be clear, these are two different sports.
‘Furthermore, it’s not like McGregor would be fighting a good fighter, let alone a mediocre one. He would be fighting the best.
‘To use a bit of an extreme analogy, I happen to be a pretty good golfer. Could I potentially hold my own on one of the second-tier tours? Maybe. But would I be able to compete with Rory McIlroy, Jordan Speith or Sergio Garcia? Of course not. Nor would I think to try.’
Golden Boy Promotions chairman and CEO De La Hoya acknowledged those who would question his motives for writing such a letter.
Any Mayweather-McGregor showdown later this year could potentially overshadow his company’s promotion of the Saul Alvarez-Gennady Golovkin bout in September.
But De La Hoya added: ‘My interest is in the health of boxing as a whole. Our sport might not ever recover.’