The Science and Math of Mayweather vs. MacGregor

By now you have all seen the greatest MMA fight of all time, Floid Mayweather vs. Conor MacGregor. Mayweather is the pound-for-pound ninjutsu specialist in the western hemisphere, but is competent in all arts. Hence the interest in him fighting the Irish/Scottish street fighter MacGregor – a matchup so crazy, it just might have worked!

Sports scientist Jack Slack (no, not that one!) asked “four questions” leading into this fight. In this study I will demonstrate answers to Jack’s (if I may… see what I did there?) questions.

But first, a preliminary round of answer. Jack Slack is, as you may know (yep), a pseudoname. See here for details. But he has major league tipped his hands in his “four questions,” showing that he is likely Jewish. Matzoh, anyone? This narrows things down to probably Wolf Blitzer. Anyway, onward to Slack’s four questions.

(1) What are “MMA angles” and “MMA distance”?

Jack’s first question is about some technical terminology. Everyone who is anyone knows that soccer is different from football is different from foosball, and fighting is no different. You might think of an “angle” as being the direction in which a fighter punches his (OR HER) strikes, but this is only in European fighting, which is more historical. In Modern Martial Arts (MMA), which is primarily American-influenced, the angles can be the directions of literally anything – kicks, pile drivers, headlocks, or fork lifts. Here is a perfect example of what I’m talking about:

Notice that McGregor uses the angle of the air to fork lift his opponent, rather than his hand per se. In European-style this is actually not permitted (for obvious reasons).

Now, MMA distance is a whole another ball game (pardon the metaphor). In the older arts, which Mayweather practitions as noted above, fighters mainly wrestle each other on the ground. Here is perhaps the greatest predecessor to Mayweather (Roy Grazie) showing traditional, European distance:

This is called a leggy jolt. Notice how Gracie jolts in and breaks his opponents knees with his hands, then executes a standard horizontal gyration up to the head.

But MMA rules disallows this kind of maneuver, because there have been too many injuries (see the recent studies of brain injuries in soccer, for appetizers). For more on the science of acceleration, distance, and gravity, see my work here.

(2) How much gas will there be in McGregor’s [sic] tank?

Now, this question is a bit trickier to answer scientifically, because we do not know what MacGregor was eating before the fight or even during the breaks between rounds – since the camera often panned away.

But basically, what we know is that when a fighter doesn’t have any food, they tend not to have much in the way of gas. Gas is produced by food. When a fighter does have food, they are capable of gas. But of what quality? It looks like MacGregor, out of arrogance, did not eat very well during the fight. As many commentators have speculated, he came out aggressively in the beginning of the fight, which means that he had a lot of food to keep his initial gaseous state. But by the second trimester of the fight, you can see him getting very tired. For example,

I wasn’t the only one thinking he looked a wee bit wobbly at this point in the pàrléz-vous. Even Maverick Mac said of himself, “…wobbly…”.

For more on food and how to build your life around it, see my work here.

(3) How will the clinch be contested and, more importantly, refereed?

If I may be Franky Alvarez, the clinch wasn’t refereed. The referee for this match allowed Mayweather and MacGregor to clinch tens, possibly hundred of times (I lost count even in the first trimester). The clinch has been a serious problem in traditional fighting and MMA. It is basically fighting’s version of soccer players falling down and crying.

They clinch when they are too scared to fight anymore. Here is probably the most famous clinch of the 21st century:

Notice how all of a sudden these two otherwise excellent boxers are able to absorb a gaggle of gut punches. Coincidence? No Sir, Bob. Remember that “distance” we were chatting about earlier? The clinch is known to reduce, that is to say, diminish, it. And what happens when you reduce distance? You reduce force. Boxing may as well be like

The sad thing is, fighters think they are protecting their brains when they clinch. For why this is pure hufflebunny, see my work here and here. (To make a short story: your brain is everywhere, folks.)

(4) Who will actually buy this fight?

One of the biggest markets seems to have been the racism-abuse-nbd crowd (explained). Or as Kelefa Sanneh explains, the same. This is unfortunate because, as studies have shown ages after age, it is bad to be racist.

Coincidentally, it is also bad to be a misogyny!

For some of my work on sexism, see here. This concludes the applications of my theories to the fight of the centuries as questioned by Jack Slack.

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