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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

What’s Conor McGregor’s legacy? UFC 264 fighters focus on his impression

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“Once you signal to combat me, it is a celebration. You ring again dwelling, you ring your spouse. ‘Child, we executed it. We’re wealthy, child, Conor McGregor made us wealthy. Escape the crimson panties!'”

These have been the phrases of Conor McGregor in 2015 after he headlined his first pay-per-view towards Chad Mendes for the interim UFC featherweight title. What he stated would show to be prophetic; the Irishman went on to smash box-office information as not solely the most important attraction within the UFC, but in addition the most important attract all of fight sports activities.  

And it is not even shut. 

McGREGOR-POIRIER 3: Date, time, odds, PPV value, card & location for UFC 264

Six years after McGregor launched the world to “Crimson Panty Night time,” he enters his rubber match with Dustin Poirier at a crossroads. He began his UFC profession at 145 kilos with a 7-0 report and 6 knockouts — together with a shocking 13-second knockout of then-champion Jose Aldo — however hasn’t been the identical drive within the Octagon since then.

He bit off greater than he may chew when he moved as much as 170 kilos to face Nate Diaz, who submitted him within the second spherical. In fact, he did turn into the primary fighter to carry world titles in two weight courses when he defeated Eddie Alvarez for the light-weight championship in 2016. And he by some means managed to field Floyd Mayweather within the second-biggest pay-per-view of all time.

However he has solely gone 3-3 within the UFC over the previous 5 years and a litany of authorized points has almost overshadowed his potential. He stays an enormous draw, however there are many questions after his knockout loss to Poirier in January.

And if he finds himself on the dropping finish of this trilogy combat, one should query whether or not the McGregor period has reached its finale. 

However whatever the consequence in Las Vegas on Saturday, McGregor’s legacy has firmly been established. He’s a game-changer and fighters admit that they’ve borrowed closely from his playbook. Whether or not it is the trash-talking or determining the right way to market themselves exterior the UFC, each single blended martial artist needs what McGregor has. Even when they don’t seem to be preventing McGregor, being on the identical occasion because the Irishman ends in a residual impact that’s not like something they’ve ever skilled. The vitality is incomparable and the publicity is unmatched.

“I stated to myself that I’ve to get to this. Watching that combat was the head of my life,” stated middleweight Dricus Du Plessis, who went from attending McGregor’s combat with Donald Cerrone final January as a fan to sharing a combat card with “Mystic Mac.” “And now I am preventing on the prelims.”

In case you have by no means had the chance to attend a Conor McGregor combat, it is not like something ever seen in blended martial arts. It isn’t only a combat; it is an occasion that holds folks’s consideration hostage. A McGregor combat finds media retailers that not often, if ever, cowl the game asking for entry. You do not want a passing curiosity in MMA to comprehend {that a} Conor McGregor combat is a giant deal. And that is the explanation so many fighters both need to combat him or be featured on an occasion he headlines. 

“I feel the eyes that he brings is one thing totally different,” stated Gilbert Burns, who will face Stephen Thompson within the co-main occasion of UFC 264. “Me and a lot of the guys know Conor is a giant star. We all know there are going to be a whole lot of eyes on that card and I am within the co-main occasion.”

Contemplate this: McGregor has been the principle occasion in seven of the ten best-selling UFC pay-per-views of all time. In the event you embrace boxing, there are solely two names which are persistently within the high 10 PPVs of all time: Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor. His worth to the corporate is simple, to the purpose that even potential rivals are hoping that McGregor emerges victorious towards Poirier. 

“I need him to win as a result of every time he wins it is good for the game,” stated Ilia Topuria, who will face Ryan Corridor in the UFC 264 prelims. “It is good for me and all the opponents within the UFC. I hope he wins.” 

Topuria is not flawed in his evaluation. So long as McGregor continues to win, the UFC will stay within the highlight. Granted, the previous two-division world champion finally put the MMA promotion in his shadow and have become a enterprise himself. Some consider that his antics exterior the Octagon have performed a big function in his latest outings. However no person is prepared to unhitch their wagon from McGregor’s prepare simply but. 

Like Mike Tyson earlier than him, the volatility is a part of the attract. When he isn’t tossing a dolly by way of a bus window or keeping off accusations of sexual assault, he is engaged in a disagreement together with his rival about donating to a charity or profiting closely off of his whiskey gross sales. 

He is a strolling viral second that may spring into motion at any given time. These items may finally catch as much as him and be his downfall, however till then, everyone seems to be simply having fun with the trip. 

It’s doable the UFC is conscious that McGregor’s time could come to an finish and there will likely be a necessity for a brand new star who blends potential within the Octagon with persona exterior it. Many have tried however few have the combination of ability, energy and present of gab. 

Fighters akin to 26-year-old Sean O’Malley have pulled pages out of McGregor’s playbook and seen their inventory rise. O’Malley is arguably the closest factor the UFC has to a crossover star. He is younger, boisterous and eccentric, and each fighter needs a chunk of “The Suga Present.”

He’ll be in a primary place to lift his inventory as he opens the UFC 264 PPV card towards Kris Moutinho. Though unranked, he has amassed greater than 1.5 million followers on Instagram together with his viral knockouts, distinctive persona and simply sufficient volatility to captivate audiences, for higher or worse.

“I’ve watched each single interview [McGregor has] ever executed and all of his fights a number of instances,” O’Malley advised Sporting Information. “Lots of people attempt to say I am attempting to be like Conor, however you’ll be able to have two folks with comparable personalities. I positively have taken bits and items to be taught from, which is a brilliant factor to do. He is impressed me a ton.”

Whether or not you consider that McGregor is on the brief listing of nice pound-for-pound fighters or assume that he is the beneficiary of the celebrities correctly aligning in his favor, the actual fact stays that he has left his mark on the game. Typically imitated however by no means duplicated, Mystic Mac’s legacy is already set in stone. The one query left is: Can he reclaim previous glory contained in the Octagon, or have we already seen the perfect of Conor McGregor?



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