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Conor McGregor happy with smaller gloves, but sees pros and cons to it

UFC star Conor McGregor had agreed to box Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 10-ounce gloves, per Nevada State Athletic Commission rules, but was pleased that the panel agreed at its monthly meeting Wednesday to allow them to wear 8-ounce gloves.

"I'm very happy with how the Nevada State Athletic Commission handled it. They handled it fairly and they listened to both requests," McGregor said on a teleconference with reporters to talk about the heavily hyped fight with Mayweather on Aug. 26 (Showtime PPV) at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Conor McGregor says that fighting in 8-ounce gloves will help his punching power but acknowledged the change will also add speed to Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s hands. AP Photo/John Locher
Although Nevada rules stipulate that in boxing matches contracted over 147 pounds the fighters must use 10-ounce gloves, McGregor wanted smaller ones and Mayweather agreed. So, both submitted formal requests to the commission asking for it to issue a waiver for their fight, which is contracted at 154 pounds.

The commissioners voted unanimously to give the fighters the waiver on Wednesday, when they also appointed Robert Byrd as the referee and Burt Clements, Dave Moretti and Guido Cavalleri as judges.

"Overall their approach to the decision [about the gloves], the judges and referee -- they were fair throughout in taking into consideration both fighters' requests," McGregor said.

McGregor is accustomed to fighting his UFC bouts in 4-ounce fingerless gloves and said he believed that the lighter boxing gloves will make his punching power more effective against Mayweather, though he acknowledged that the lighter gloves could also give Mayweather even faster hands than he already has.

"I think that's it in a nutshell. You have pros and cons on both sides," he said of the new glove size. "Both athletes were asking for it, and me, I'm coming up in ounces from what I am used to. Hey, look what I fight with. I fight in 4-ounce fingerless gloves. [The change] benefits both of us in certain ways."

Of course, McGregor said he believes the change will benefit him more. He had been predicting a fourth-round knockout, but now that he can wear smaller gloves he said Mayweather won't go past the second round.

"We are prepared for every possible outcome," McGregor said. "Part of me wants to show some skill and dismantle him that way, [but] I'm ready to put him away in the first 10 seconds."

UFC president Dana White said he also believes the switch to the lighter gloves will have a major impact on the fight.

"I think it affects the contest a lot," White said. "Yes, Floyd will be faster with 8-ounce gloves, but he's more defensive. Conor hits like a truck, so smaller gloves help him big time. I think it absolutely does [work in McGregor's favor]."

White said he was unsure why Mayweather agreed to go along with McGregor's request for the smaller gloves but is happy that he did. He said the topic never came up in the negotiations for the fight as 10-ounce gloves were always what they figured they would fight with due to the Nevada rules.

"I don't know what's changed, but I'm glad it did," White said.

McGregor has his option of wearing any brand glove that the commission will approve, but he said he has not decided which kind he will wear.

"We're still in discussion on that," McGregor said.

Mayweather has fought almost all of his professional fights in 8-ounce gloves, since virtually all of his bouts have been at 147 pounds or less. He has said he will wear the same Grant brand gloves he always wears.

Author: Dan Rafael
Source: http://www.espn.com/boxing/story/_/id/20362700/conor-mcgregor-pleased-switch-smaller-gloves-boxing-match-floyd-mayweather-jr

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