So there honestly isn’t a great “article” out there detailing what happened yesterday but the good folks at Sherdog have an interesting social media and youtube breakdown that gives you not only a first person view of what went on, but a surreal one at that as you see and hear multiple UFC fighters as basically people at their jobs thrown into a chaotic situation.
The story itself goes like this: All of the UFC 223 fighters were at the Barclays Center for “media day”, where they sit and take numerous interviews from every outlet imaginable in the MMA world and beyond in order to promote their fight and the event. I know this is not what this blog is about but I’d like to address this is as grueling as it sounds. In the middle of a weight cut and 2 days away from a cage fight and you have to spend the whole day answer the same questions over and over.
Anyway, after media day the fighters were in a couple of vans, located under the Barclay’s where team buses normally are, waiting to go back to the hotel they were staying at. Unbeknownst to the fighters, security, etc. reps from The Mac Life, Conor McGregor’s website and branding campaign(s), had media credentials and thus access to the area where the caravan of vehicles was. McGregor apparently had taken exception to Khabib Nurmagomedov’s altercation with Artem Lobov, Khabib’s statement about there being one king after Saturday, being stripped of his belt in general, a combination of all of the above, or something else entirely and had flown across the Goddam Atlantic Ocean to rectify the situation. The folks from The Mac Life let him and a dozen or so of his crew, Lobov included, in a side door or something and they attacked the van Khabib was in. They threw some trash cans and barricades and God knows what else at the van. One projectile demolished one of the windows, cutting both Michael Chiesa and Ray Borg, who were sitting next to it, causing them to be pulled from their fights tomorrow. Something else cracked a windshield. This was all after McGregor’s crew demanded that somebody get off the van to confront them, most likely Khabib.
In the videos above you can see the look of absolute shock and confoundment in Ray Borg’s face. Like “is this happening?” You can hear Joanna Jedrzejczyk say something with the same amount of disbelief. Like I said it’s surreal. Another video from IG taken by someone in a Starbucks near or in the Barclay’s shows McGregor and his people running out of the building and into a large SUV. He was at large for awhile before surrendering and being taken into police custody around 10:30pm EST last night when he realized he’d probably be charged. I mean, shit. To be 29, at the height of your powers, a multi-millionaire many times over, and have an entire sport in your hand only to pull some shit like this is beyond stupid.
Who knows what was going through his head. Aside from the criminal charges, which will actually probably net out to some fines or what not when you think about it, there is a laundry list of other consequences that Conor will probably face. All of them of course are “probable” as it Conor McGregor after all. He’ll probably be suspended by the UFC itself. Dana White already said he’s not a fan of being in the CM business right now. He’ll probably be suspended by the NYSAC, which will be enforced by all athletic commissions in the United States. Whether or not you think athletic commissions overstep is a debate for another time, it’s probably happening. Michael Chiesa and Ray Borg could absolutely seek damages for their lost fight money as they have been pulled. The same could actually be said for their opponents, Anthony Pettis and Brandon Moreno. To that extent, while not the marquee fights on the card, losing them and the Lobov-Caceres fight, cancelled due to Lobov being pulled for his actions, could cost the UFC some money which means the UFC could go after Conor monetarily as well. It’s just a mess of shit that could rain down on him and that is just what comes off the top of my head as O, Idk, someone who isn’t a fucking lawyer.
The TL:DR of this blog is staggering: Conor and his buddies attack a group of UFC fighters on a van resulting in 3 fights being cancelled, two fighters being CUT BY BROKEN GLASS, and McGregor himself being arrested. Dana White called it “the most digusting” incident in UFC history and he may not be wrong, it really has been hard to process. It will be interesting to see as McGregor’s legal and professional battle unfold what the ramifications will be for the winner of tonight’s Main Event and the UFC as a whole. He didn’t come here to take part. He came here to cause chaos.