Irish boxing great Steve Collins claims that he and his brother, well-regarded trainer Paschal, have already pieced together a game plan that could help Conor McGregor inflict the first blemish on the professional boxing record of Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Collins, a WBO titlist at both middleweight and super-middleweight in the mid-1990’s, made the claim.
“I looked at Mayweather and said, ‘Do you know what, if Conor is going to beat him, this is how he could do it,'” said Collins, who erased the ‘0’ from Chris Eubank’s record on a famous night at the Green Glens Arena in Millstreet, County Cork back in 1995.
“My brother Paschal and I sat down and we put together a strategy, one day chatting, on how we would prepare him to fight Mayweather. We would show him how to win.”
“And if he followed our instruction and did what we told him to do, he could beat him.”
McGregor is of course trained by SBG Ireland founder and head coach John Kavanagh, who is assisted by striking coach ‘Rowdy’ Owen Roddy. They make a formidable team. However, if the UFC lightweight champ signed to fight Mayweather, a pure boxing mind would be needed in camp.
“We communicate with him and John Kavanagh, his trainer, he’s a great guy,” said Collins. “John Kavanagh knows that we are the boxing brains in Ireland.”
“He’s spoken to us, not about Mayweather, but about boxing and bits and pieces, and he’s a very open-minded man.”
“I’m telling you now, if the Mayweather fight comes off, if he wants us to prepare him for it, we’ll sit down and we’ll tell him how to beat Mayweather.”
Indeed, their appears to be a strong relationship between Paschal Collins and the SBG team. McGregor has often gone to Collins’ Dublin gym to spar and, more recently, Collins has been bringing Wexford heavyweight Niall Kennedy to SBG to spar with John Phillips, who makes his UFC debut next weekend in Denver.
It’s not exactly surprising, then, that when Dublin footballer Philly McMahon interviewed Kavanagh Pundit Arena a few months ago, the Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt suggested that Paschal Collins will be brought into the fold if a Mayweather fight gets signed.
“For boxing, in Dublin, Conor goes to train with Paschal Collins every now and again – Steve Collins brother – out in Blanchardstown,” said Kavanagh. “For sure, we would bring him in. He is a fantastic coach. I have met him a number of times, we click. We are both kind of on the same page. So, Paschal would be the man there.”
If this partnership materializes, Steve Collins believes that the team will have everything needed to cause a seismic upset – the tactical and technical nous, as well as a gifted athlete who has enough talent to make a daring transition across combat codes a successful one.
“When we show him how to win, I guarantee you that he’ll listen to us and he’ll go with us. We know how to win fights,” said ‘The Celtic Warrior’. “The only reason I’m saying that is because McGregor has the ability to do it. He’s a super athlete who can change his style.”
“Some guys are set, ingrained in a certain way of fighting. He’s not. He can change. That’s what makes him great and that’s why he’s so popular.”
With offers being thrown about by Mayweather and UFC president Dana White, the level of cynicism involved in conversations on the topic of this bizarre super-fight has dipped noticeably in recent weeks.
At this point, Mayweather vs McGregor remains unlikely, but it no longer seems like fantasy.