Mayweather vs. McGregor odds move closer to parity as fight nears

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While no one can say with certainty how Conor McGregor will fare in a boxing ring when it matters, his price is lower than that of Buster Douglas before his epic heavyweight upset of Mike Tyson back in 1990.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a -400 betting favorite to defeat the +300 underdog McGregor in their boxing match on Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

A deluge of action on McGregor from bettors looking for a big payout has continually squeezed the lines closer and closer since the first rumblings about McGregor, the two-division UFC champion, making a combat sports cross-over to fight the 49-0 Mayweather. At one point, Mayweather was a -2250 favorite with McGregor coming back at +950.

It’s a scheduled 12-round match, with the fighters slated to compete at 154 pounds and wear 10-ounce gloves, which are 2½ times heaver than what McGregor wears in the UFC.

While everyone has an opinion about how the bout might play out, straight-up wagering might not be the way to go on Saturday. The 40-year-old Mayweather, who has been laid off just two weeks shy of two years, still has to show he has the timing that has made him one of the greatest defensive boxers of all time.

With McGregor getting mixed reviews on the boxing skills he’s exhibited in sparring sessions, Mayweather at -125 for a victory by knockout, technical knockout or disqualification on the betting props for Saturday’s fight offers a fair return.

Mayweather winning by decision – the way he wins most of his fights against full-time boxers  – pays +250. McGregor is at +350 on the KO/TKO/DQ prop and +1200 for a win by decision, which is far and away the least likely outcome.

McGregor, at age 26, is much younger and has fought much more recently than Mayweather and will also come in with a reach advantage. Mayweather has had some difficulty in the past adapting to southpaws, so there might be some openings for McGregor to land some shots early.

McGregor will also keep face if he goes the distance, win or lose, so that aforementioned +250 on Mayweather by decision could pan out as a safe play.

Those who are true believers in “Mystic Mac” can also take him to win in the first four rounds, which pays out at odds of +500.

As far as odds on how many rounds the fight will go, the under is plus money up until 6.5 rounds, and does not drop to 2/1 until under 4.0 rounds, which pays +200. There is plus money on the over starting at 8.0 rounds.

Canelo Alvarez withdraws from May 5 fight with Golovkin

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LOS ANGELES (AP) Canelo Alvarez has withdrawn from next month’s middleweight title fight with Gennady Golovkin, two months after Alvarez twice tested for a banned substance.

The May 5 fight in Las Vegas was to have been a rematch of the draw they fought last September. But on March 5, Alvarez’s promoters, Golden Boy Promotions, announced he twice tested positive for the steroid clenbuterol in February. They blamed contaminated meat, and Alvarez agreed to random drug testing.

It was unlikely the Nevada State Athletic Commission would approve the fight after it temporarily suspended Alvarez, who could face a longer suspension.

Alvarez is to appear before the commission April 18 concerning the positive tests. Golden Boy President Eric Gomez said Tuesday the promoters were advised Alvarez likely would not be cleared to fight May 5.

“I have always been a clean fighter and I always will be a clean fighter,” Alvarez said Tuesday during a conference call. “I want to prove without a doubt that I have never intentionally ingested clenbuterol. I have nothing to hide and I want to be open and transparent through this process. . I have never taken illegal substances and this is no different.”

Golovkin is hoping to fight a different opponent at T-Mobile Arena on May 5, but it won’t approach the huge event that the rematch with Alvarez would have been. It’s possible the two could meet later this year, depending on any sanctions placed on the Mexican fighter.

Golovkin, of Kazakhstan, publicly doubted that tainted meat caused Alvarez’s positive test.

“Again with Mexican meat? Come on,” Golovkin said in March. I told you, it’s not Mexican meat. This is Canelo. This is his team. This is his promotion. … Canelo is cheating. They’re using these drugs, and everybody is just trying to pretend it’s not happening.”

Alvarez-Triple G fight in jeopardy on drug complaint

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LAS VEGAS (AP) Nevada boxing regulators have filed a formal complaint against Canelo Alvarez for doping violations, putting his May 5 middleweight title rematch with Gennady Golovkin in jeopardy.

Alvarez could be suspended for a year for testing positive twice for the performance-enhancing drug Clenbuterol in random urine tests conducted in his hometown of Guadalajara, Mexico, in February.

An April 18 hearing was set on the complaint by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, replacing an earlier April 10 hearing that had been set. The hearing is just two weeks before the fight, making it doubtful the fight will proceed on that date.

Nevada boxing regulations call for a one-year ban for first violations, though it can be cut in half at the commission’s discretion. Even if Alvarez gets a six-month suspension, the fight would not take place until August at the earliest.