Conor McGregor single-handedly removed three fights from UFC 223 two days before the event, but this action by the former champion will have lasting repercussions.
Upset with Khabib Nurmagomedov following his confrontation with McGregor’s teammate Artem Lobov, McGregor flew to New York and hunted down the Russian lightweight. He was able to break into the backstage area of the Barclays Center, where the red corner fighters were being transported out of the venue via bus. McGregor and an entourage of 15+ men, including Artem Lobov, stormed the lot as McGregor began throwing heavy metal objects towards the bus.
The Irishman threw a dolly that broke a window and caused injuries to a UFC employee as well as Michael Chiesa and Ray Borg, who each had to pull out of their fights. Artem Lobov was also removed from the card as well due to his involvement with Conor’s rampage. The full statement from the promotion on the changes to the bout order of UFC 223 can be read here.
McGregor, Lobov, and the other men involved in the situation have been banned from the venue during Saturday’s event, as stated by the UFC. Additionally, President Dana White will allow the NYPD to determine any sentencing before handing out disciplinary action of his own.
Conor McGregor has not fought since November 2016, when he defeated Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight title. He boxed Floyd Mayweather in the meantime, and had not been stripped of his lightweight title until the lead-up of UFC 223. It is unknown what his future in combat sports holds.
UFC 223 takes place on Saturday, April 7 from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York (the show must go on after all). Zabit Magomedsharipov vs. Kyle Bochniak will replace Michael Chiesa vs. Anthony Pettis on the main card following the damage Chiesa sustained in the incident.