Conor McGregor: ‘Maybe Donald Trump won’t be so bad’
He’s not known for pulling his punches — either inside or out of the Octagon — and now MMA star Conor McGregor has weighed in on underdog Donald Trump’s stunning upset of Hillary Clinton in the U.S. Presidential election.
“I’m not from around here, [but] maybe Donald won’t be so bad,” Irishman McGregor told CNN as he was preparing to take on Eddie Alvarez at Saturday’s UFC 205 Madison Square Garden showpiece.
“I don’t really feel anything changes — essentially it’s just like a fight. Someone wins, someone loses, and then you wake up and everyone’s day carries on … I wish him well, [let’s] see what he does.”
McGregor referred to the recent series of debates between Trump and Clinton as “verbal warfare … similar to what I’m involved in,” but added he hasn’t seen any examples of the divisiveness that has dogged the new President-elect.
Pressed further, McGregor replied: “I do not care.”
‘Whacked, crazy business’
Most of all, McGregor cares about fighting his own battles, and he could become the first UFC fighter to hold titles in two weight divisions simultaneously when he faces lightweight champion Alvarez
“I think I lay claim to being the greatest of all time,” McGregor asserted.
“Not even have they not come close, they haven’t even attempted it … I feel confident; I carry myself with pride. I’m a proud Irishman and wherever I go, I represent my nation and its fighting heritage.”
The build up to Saturday’s event, which marks UFC’s long-awaited debut in New York City after a bill was passed in March lifting the 19-year ban on professional mixed martial arts in the state, found the typically bold, brash Irishman in playful mood.
While McGregor may have turned up at the news conference 14 minutes late, he quickly made up for lost time.
Wearing a knee-length white mink coat, patterned red trousers and a turtleneck, the Irishman briefly stole his opponent’s belt and was restrained by security after raising Alvarez’s chair over his own head in an incident more in keeping with WWE.
“This is fighting, man,” responded UFC President Dana White. “It’s a whacked, crazy business.”
McGregor is surely aware how much is riding on his continued success within UFC, with Saturday also marking the first occasion in which three championship fights will be held on same card.
It’s only been a few months since UFC announced a $4 billion sale to the California-based talent agency WME-IMG, who would have purchased a product without the Irishman, if he had come good on a promise made in April to “retire young.”
That promise was subsequently retracted, and it’s no surprise McGregor is dismissive of the prospect of UFC without him: “I tell you, it looks a hell of a lot cheaper than it was sold for, that’s for sure.”