Conor McGregor has turned into what he once criticized: a bully and a bum
The Irishmans tiresome ordinance is doing more to destroy the UFCs hard-won credibility than any stomach-turning skirmish or failed drugging test
Watching Conor McGregor racing through the loading dock at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Thursday, hurling dollies at a bus like some crazy-eyed goon, I could only think of John McCain.
It was the US senator who years ago condemned the UFC as ” human cockfighting “, affixing a label of lawlessness on mixed martial art that pushed them into the corners of what was considered acceptable adult behaviour. The UFC has worked for years to combat this image, with brain safety and drugging mandates that helped attract a corporate customer and led McCain to reconsider his opinion.
” The MMA cleaned up their ordinance, they really did ,” McCain told me in 2016.” When it firstly started they are capable of do events that are now proscribed. I don’t have a problem with the MMA .”
Now the UFC’s biggest name, their hotshot who burst into the mainstream, landing on publication includes, seducing many to a boast they’d never might have never considered, has been charged with assault and criminal mischief. One of these weighs is a felony. And it does far more than any brutal skirmish or flunked doping exam to destroy the credibility the UFC has built in recent years. The videos of the organization’s most visible fighter storming across concrete hallways, hurling trash can, project to the world an likenes that shows McCain’s original impression.
What does it say about the UFC when the only fighter to hold names in two of the statistics division at once starts acting a common hoodlum?
Two years ago, back when he still came off as cunning, McGregor formerly sat in a pre-fight news conference with Nate Diaz and said Diaz had” a bully attitude “. He then teased Diaz’s mentors- some of whom are MMA royalty- as “bums.” As he said this, McGregor wore a fine plaid dres. He seemed handsome. And even though he squabbled with Diaz on theatre, he still came off as regal, the fighter with an uncanny ability to describe exactly how he would triumph his battles. For this he became known as” Mystic Mac “.
But there was nothing metaphysical or supernatural about the man bellowing through Barclays with a posse of flatterers, scampering from insurance, flinging anything not bolted down at a bus filled with other soldiers. When he threw the dolly through the bus opening, he supposedly injured lightweight boxer Michael Chiesa and flyweight Ray Borg enough that both were plucked from Saturday’s UFC 233 placard. McGregor came off as the very things he once criticized: a bully and a bum.
Maybe, in a manner that is, this was some kind of extravagant oppose promotion. The real target of McGregor’s ire was presumably Khabib Nurmagomedov, the rising lightweight superstar whose fighting against Max Holloway on Saturday night was for the belt McGregor was deprived of for not crusading in the UFC since November 2016. McGregor was once a master of hype, construct hysteria for his fightings with corrupt harangues.
What happened Thursday was no masterful stroke of promotional genius. McGregor’s act has moved forward wearisome in recent months as his virtuoso has peaked and he almost seems to have developed a compulsion to be outrageous. He gazed tacky and objectionable in his pre-fight tour with Floyd Mayweather before their struggle last year and in dragging his gang of hangers-on to indictment a bus under an arena two days before a big battle darknes was stupid. There’s no honor in get “re under arrest for” potentially damaging the careers of other fighters. McGregor, a human preoccupied with money, should realize that. With Chiesa and Borg’s withdrawls and UFC president Dana White’s removal of Artem Lobov( who was with McGregor on Thursday ), he may have expenditure the UFC three battles on Saturday’s card. When Holloway was declared medically incapable to oppose on Friday morning, the UFC was left with a shell of an incident.
” This is the last stunt on globe that we’d ever pull ,” White told ESPN .” This is flustering for the boast and undoubtedly for the UFC. This is the furthest occasion from a stunt. This is bad.
Times have changed. This isn’t the old anything-goes UFC. The production White and others did to polish the organization’s epitome resulted in a$ 4bn marketing to WME-IMG. The modern UFC is not the renegade UFC. They are a huge corporate entity desperate to appeal to the mainstream. What McGregor did on Thursday might suck a knowing smile from a fight fan which is able to shrug the whole act off an integrated part of “fighting”. But it doesn’t appeal to the broader nature that employs parties like McGregor and former female wizard Ronda Rousey on periodical handles and television commercials.
” It’s out of reference for Conor McGregor and any of my boxers ,” White said in his ESPN interview, examining shaken by what the fuck is up.” Listen, crazy events is true in plays . … In its own history of the UFC, this is definitely the most difficult thought that’s happened. “Thats just not” Conor McGregor. “Thats just not” the Conor McGregor that I know .”
UFC executives have been frustrated with McGregor ever since he knocked out Jose Aldo in 13 seconds back in UFC 194. The win propelled McGregor to brand-new reputation, stirring him almost big than the organization himself- something he employed to become increasing more difficult to control. They put up with his behaviour because, for a duration, it built them coin.
But this time McGregor swept a line. White is right, the McGregor of recent months, the McGregor on Thursday, was nothing like the one who became the UFC’s greatest star. He has to make a choice now. Does he want to be a champ or a bully and a bum, throwing it all away to hurl trashcans at bus?