Marc Ratner currently serves as the UFC Senior Vice President Of Regulatory Affairs, but has also served on the Nevada State Athletic Commission for over two decades.
While there has been a lot of criticism about the super fight between UFC Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather, the UFC employees sees things a little differently.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Ratner said to MMA Junkie. “I will be excited and we’ll see what Conor can do. I’m a big fan of Floyd. He can do everything. He’s really hard to hit. And he’s been off a couple of years. He never gets out of shape, but he is 40 years old. So we’ll see. I think it helps both sports in a lot of ways. There will be a lot of negativity, there’s no question about it. But the more people talk about it, the more people hate it, they’ll still watch it. And that’s what it’s about.”
One of the biggest challenges facing the bout is the experience difference between McGregor and Mayweather, in which McGregor has zero pro fights compared to the fifty fights under Mayweather’s belt.
Ratner also knows from his experience in the NSAC that it was a tough choice for them to approve the fight in the end.
“It’s tough for the commission to approve this, there’s no question about it,” Ratner said. “And I think Conor maybe did some amateur boxing, but certainly he’s never fought pro. You have to take that leap. I believe that it’s approvable in a lot of ways, because he’s such a good athlete. I go back to the late 50s, that I remember that Pete Rademacher was fighting Floyd Patterson. Pete Rademacher was making his pro debut for the heavyweight championship. So have these fights happened before? Sure. Antonio Inoki vs. Cassius Clay – or Muhammad Ali at that time. It’s a spectacle, it’s entertaining. I know a lot of states would say, today, that they would never approve it. If it came to their state, I think they would.”
Conor McGregor versus Floyd Mayweather takes place on Saturday, August 26 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.
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