The Last Time Floyd Mayweather Destroyed A Non-Boxer In The Ring
To some people, it is the biggest boxing match in the world, to others, it’s a freakshow worthy of a slot in a 19th century circus but no matter what your opinion is, when Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather throw down in a boxing ring on August 26, we’re all going to be watching to see just what the hell happens.
Let’s all agree on something right here and now though: no matter how good Floyd Mayweather coming out of retirement to fight The Notorious turns out to be, it will never compare to Money’s no holds barred battle with the Big Show that took place at WrestleMania 24 in 2008.
Just over nine years ago, Mayweather swapped the boxing ring for a wrestling one and took on a 7ft, 174kg (384lb) giant named Paul Wight (aka the Big Show).
A multiple world champion in the WWE and WCW, Big Show returned to the world of pro wrestling in February 2008 to hilariously face 5ft6 Rey Mysterio, a legendary lucha libre with incredible acrobatic skills.
But before that contest got underway, Mayweather, reacting to taunts directed at him by the Big Show, jumped a handrail and popped his adversary with a combo of punches that flattened his nose. Mayweather and his posse beat the hastiest of retreats: they legged it through the crowd and out of the arena quicker than you could say “Wait, is that how that was supposed to go down?!”.
Speaking in an interview with SPORTbible about the scripted confrontation, Big Show recalled, “I told Floyd before that he had to break my nose, otherwise we were going to be dead out there.
“So Floyd gets in the ring after I’ve done the deal with Rey and I get down on one knee and all of a sudden these punches hit me and it wasn’t until I watched it back that I realised just how many times he hit me. It was like a bomb going off.
“I thought he’d caught me with a couple of blows, but when I watched it back it was so many more. I warned Floyd before we did that angle that as soon as he hit me he would have to run for his life as I knew I wouldn’t react well at all. I think he ended up getting in his car and driving away from the arena.”
That confrontation set up a no holds barred match between the oddly matched pair in front of nearly 75,000 people inside Orlando’s Citrus Dome at WrestleMania 24, which turned out to be the WWE’s biggest show that year.
In the lead-up to their showdown, reactions were mixed (to say the least): many wrestling fans didn’t think that Mayweather deserved such a coveted matchup while a lot of boxing fans thought that it was a waste of time for the biggest man (not literally) in their sport to get involved in such a silly spectacle
On the night, though, both men delivered a performance that would go down in the history of wrestling: cast in the unfamiliar role of a face (good guy), Mayweather got right into it and put on an exciting, realistic performance. Mayweather’s entourage got involved too and the scene descended into an immensely entertaining, chaotic brawl. Money sealed his victory by donning some brass knuckles and putting Big Show down for the count with a shot to the jaw.
Popular wrestling newsletter The Wrestling Observer gave the following account of the bout:
“This match was so much fun live. This was so far and away better than anyone had any right to expect. Floyd was great, and as noted elsewhere he had an awesome time and was saying he wanted to come back. He also got good reviews and was said to be super cool to everyone all weekend.”
The also show drew over one million PPV buys, grossed a record $23.8 million in revenue, and brought in $5.85 million in ticket sales (a Citrus Bowl record).
In reality, McGregor-Mayweather will most likely eclipse those numbers but they will have to put on one hell of a show to top this classic battle of David vs Goliath.
WATCH BIG SHOW AND MAYWEATHER THROW DOWN ON THE PLAYER BELOW: