We all scoffed when former UFC double champion Conor McGregor called out the generation's greatest boxer, Floyd Mayweather, back in 2017. But look what happened: star power plus big bucks equals dream match-up. Be you primarily an MMA or boxing fan, McGregor and Mayweather drilled the hype in before treating us to 10 rounds of combat Top Trumps. Now we see the UFC peppered with boxing-based MMA champions, who, post-McGregor era, are unafraid to call their shot and push for the one-in-a-million superfight. Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic thinks he can take on lineal boxing heavyweight Tyson Fury, while Sambo-wrestling-based lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov has been calling Mayweather out for over a year. As far-fetched as they may sound, or as a “disgrace” as it is to the name of boxing, chances are you will tune in if super-promoters Dana White and Eddie Hearn hop on board. Some MMA champions have already turned their noses up at the prospect of a crossover. “Why would I come to the proving ground of all fighting … and then afterward, fight a guy and take away like 80 per cent of my weapons?” UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya asked on the Ebro in the Morning radio show last month. While the likelihood of many of these fights are “not the priority”, as per Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, they demonstrate the increased convergence in combat sports and offer refreshing alternatives to defending titles or going for the “double champ” status. The following dream crossover fights have not simply been plucked out of thin air – either an MMA fighter has called the boxer out (or vice versa) or rumours have surrounded the pair this year. They are ranked from least to most likely to happen. 5. Henry Cejudo vs Vasiliy Lomachenko Henry Cejudo (professional MMA record 15-2) demands to be called “Triple C” – as in triple champion – because he is an Olympic gold medallist and a two-weight UFC champion. The 32-year-old holds the flyweight and bantamweight belts, having defeated pound-for-pound nominee Demetrious Johnson in 2018 and contenders TJ Dillashaw and Marlon Moraes this year, essentially clearing out both divisions. In June, Cejudo teased a crossover into boxing following Artem Lobov's bare-knuckle boxing debut win against Paulie Malagnaggi. “What do you think an Olympic and UFC champ-champ would do to boxing's Vasyl Lomachenko?” Cejudo said of Lomachenko (professional boxing record 14-1), a two-time Olympic gold medallist. The Ukrainian boxing wizard, who used to train judo and wrestling, responded with a GIF from his previous bout with Anthony Crolla in which the latter struggled to stand up after being brutally knocked down. Artem Lobov (13-15,MMA) former UFC fighter wins by unanimous victory over Paulie Malagnaggi (36-8, ,Boxing) former World Champion . What do you think an Olympic & #UFC champ Champ would do to #boxing ‘s @VasylLomachenko ? pic.twitter.com/uZDmFm5f1O — Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) June 23, 2019 Cejudo then tweeted a photo of Lomachenko's only professional loss – a controversial split decision against Mexican Orlando Salido – with the caption “we all know what happened last time you fought a Mexican warrior. Who’s hand got raised again?” The 31-year-old Lomachenko laughed off the match-up with a GIF of himself face-planting under the caption “you don't understand anything in boxing”. you don't understand anything in boxing pic.twitter.com/HoMLWEctnq — LOMA (@VasylLomachenko) June 24, 2019 While it sounds like a long shot, remember that Cejudo has somehow become a top UFC draw while president White was simultaneously trying to close the flyweight division down. Cejudo is so eager to dominate the combat world that he has even called out women’s flyweight strawweight champion Zhang Weili. Don't sleep on him. 4. Jorge Masvidal vs Saul “Canelo” Alvarez Cuban-American veteran Jorge Masvidal (35-13) emerged as the UFC's breakout fighter this year after securing the one-off “bada** [expletive]” against Nate Diaz in November. “Gamebred” has had a flawless 2019, knocking out British freight-train Darren Till in March and previously undefeated American Ben Askren in a record five seconds in July. Now in a position to call the shots, Masvidal immediately went on ESPN to poke boxing phenom and four-weight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (53-1-2). Masvidal, who grew up bare-knuckle boxing in Kimbo Slice’s backyard, said he is “10 times the athlete” Alvarez is due to MMA’s all-encompassing nature. He insisted the 29-year-old Alvarez would have no chance in the Octagon and would struggle with size discrepancies in the ring. “I could definitely make a statement and even it out for MMA, my sport,” the 35-year-old Masvidal said in reference to McGregor's previous loss to Mayweather. Alvarez immediately shut the fight down, saying he respects all fighters in their own craft but this was clearly a money ploy. However, as the Mexican continues to transcend the sport with winning performances over the likes of Gennadiy Golovkin and Sergey Kovalev, then questions will be asked of where he and his lucrative DAZN contract will explore next. 3. Amanda Nunes vs Claressa Shields Brazilian bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes (18-4) has cemented herself as the greatest women’s MMA fighter of all time. She knocked out Ronda Rousey in 2016, Cris Cyborg in 2018 and Holly Holm in July – all in the first round. She beat the number one division contender Valentina Shevchenko twice, causing the UFC to create a new flyweight division just to even things out. To say that there is no-one on her level in women's MMA is putting it modestly. Enter two-time Olympic boxing gold medallist Claressa Shields (9-0), who is similarly as dominant in her own craft. To add to the story-line, the 22-year-old Shields was in teammate Cyborg's corner during her devastating knockout loss to Nunes. The respect is of course mutual, but Shields warned Nunes of a potential move into boxing: “[Nunes] is the greatest in women’s MMA, but not the greatest fighter … I'm the GWOAT – the greatest woman of all time – and I've always been that. Amanda Nunes ain’t been to the Olympics two times … if we were to fight [boxing] I would win,” Shields said to TMZ in July. She gave a “hell nah” to the idea of stepping into the Octagon, but underlined that “in boxing, Amanda Nunes would go to sleep”. Shields is the physically bigger fighter, but so was Cyborg. And now that Cyborg was sent packing to rival promotion Bellator, it may be time to get some revenge. 2. Khabib Nurmagomedov, Dustin Poirier, Cody Garbrandt or TJ Dillashaw vs Floyd Mayweather Jnr There are several MMA fighters looking to catch that Floyd Mayweather gravy train after his hugely successful crossover bout with McGregor. Cynics would say these recurring crossover matchups are classic Mayweather (50-0) efforts to remain relevant since his retirement from the sport. But it does appear that 42-year-old “Money” is making yet another comeback, announcing a “spectacular” 2020 project that UFC boss White confirms they have shaken hands over. Fans of the MMA promotion will know that White has long been promoting his Zuffa Boxing venture, which is rumoured to be introduced in the new year and is likely to include mixed martial artists who fancy themselves at boxing. Lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and former interim-champion Dustin Poirier have expressed interest in a bout with Mayweather, while bantamweights TJ Dillashaw and Cody Garbrandt are pushing to be in the first batch of Zuffa boxers. View this post on Instagram Look who I ran into at tonight’s fights in Russia. A post shared by Leonard Ellerbe (@leonardellerbe) on Oct 13, 2018 at 7:00pm PDT Perhaps the most likely match-up – if Mayweather does not go for the Manny Pacquiao rematch – is against undefeated Dagestani Khabib (28-0). In response to Khabib’s call-out last year, Mayweather said “we're fighting” and he would be earning a “nine-figure payday”. Take your pick, Floyd, your inboxes are flooding. 1. Stipe Miocic, Francis Ngannou or Junior dos Santos vs Tyson Fury Arguably the most likely combat sports crossover to happen next year is with lineal heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury (29-0-1). The 31-year-old is obliged to a rematch with Deontay Wilder in February but has openly stated he would be willing to move to MMA after his three-fight contract is up. He has already been seen training elbows and knees with Till and has gone back-and-forth with McGregor about preparing him for a transition. UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic (19-3), known as one of the best boxers in MMA, immediately called out “The Gypsy King” after beating Daniel Cormier in August. The 37-year-old Miocic is certain he can go “toe-to-toe” with Fury in the ring and would “100 per cent” rather a superfight of similar magnitude than a trilogy with Olympic wrestler Cormier. Meanwhile, heavyweight contenders Francis Ngannou and Junior dos Santos (whose Portuguese nickname Cigano also means gypsy) have stated they would love to fight Fury in both realms. “Can you imagine I sign to fight Stipe, their heavyweight champion, and we have a crossover fight?” Fury said on the True Geordie Podcast last week. “I look at Francis and Stipe, they would be like six-round bill-fillers if they were boxers … they’re just brawlers. “Their game ain't to go standing up with me and punching because there’s only one winner. And me with them four-ounce gloves on, I’d smash them all but, they’re gonna try to take me to the floor. So if I put the time and effort in to not getting took to the floor, then I can chin them.” While trash-talking and rumour mill-feeding often comes to nothing in prize fighting, Fury’s assessment over a potential crossover is the most realistic of the lot. Perhaps we will see the 2.06m giant stuffing Miocic's takedowns sometime next year.