Mayweather says McGregor has edge on paper: ‘I lost a step’

Ariel Helwani joins the Starting Lineup to discuss the absurdity of the Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather fight as well as Georges St-Pierre's return to the ring.

Floyd Mayweather says he’s “lost a step” and his upcoming opponent Conor McGregor might have the edge in their Aug. 26 boxing match.

“He’s a lot younger,” Mayweather told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith in a recent interview. “When you look at myself and Conor McGregor on paper, he’s taller, has a longer reach, he’s a bigger man from top to bottom. He’s a lot younger, so youth is on his side.”

The 40-year-old Mayweather is coming out of retirement to face the UFC fighter. His last fight was in September 2015, a win over Andre Berto that improved Mayweather’s record to 49-0.

“If you look at everything on paper, it leans toward Conor McGregor,” he said, adding, “I’m not the same fighter I was two years ago. I’m not the same fighter I was five years ago. I lost a step … I’m not what I used to be.”

Despite his acknowledgement of the age gap, Mayweather still believes he’s better.

“I didn’t say I couldn’t fight. I just said I’m not the same Floyd Mayweather I once was.”

Mayweather said in order to beat McGregor in the match at T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nev., he’ll need to be more aggressive and stray from his usual defensive style. That style was on display during his May 2015 fight against Manny Pacquiao, one that many deemed as uneventful.

“I owe the public because of the Pacquiao fight,” Mayweather said. “They weren’t pleased with that. They’re gonna be pleased with this fight here.”