Reaction to Conor Mcgregor’s Return as Predictable as It Is Sad

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Conor McGregor and Donald Cerrone, UFC 246
Conor McGregor and Donald Cerrone square off ahead of UFC 246 in Las Vegas. Photo: Gabriel Gonzalez

Conor McGregor didn’t exactly receive a warm welcome following a triumphant in-cage return at UFC 246 in Las Vegas on Saturday night. At least, not from the MMA fanbase at large.

McGregor’s return to the octagon was exactly what the UFC needed — a shot in the arm care of the biggest star in the sport’s history. Yet the reaction to McGregor’s win, a dazzling display of creative striking, has been sadly predictable in certain corners of the fandom.

Fans at the arena were clearly in awe of the performance, and more than happy with the spectacle they shelled out considerable money for. Outside that? The narrative, frankly, was written well before the fight ever took place.

The first, and most despicable of the talking points now floating around the MMA community at large, was that Donald Cerrone had been paid to take a dive. Even Nate Diaz got in on that claim. By who, of course, is never clear in these sorts of imbecilic accusations. The UFC? Why? No top-tier promotion is about to risk their license, and a multitude of lawsuits, to fix a fight that didn’t need fixing.

From a logical standpoint — and logic is something these gripes always seem to lack — if McGregor loses, the UFC gains a marketable rematch with Cowboy, whose stock then jumps up similar to that of Nate Diaz a few years back. Frankly, McGregor’s star power reaches far past his win-loss record, and besides, heading into UFC 246, he’d lost all of two fights inside the octagon. It’s not as if he was a .500 fighter on the brink of being cut.

Would McGregor ever agree to a fixed fight, or try to fix one himself? The amount of hubris the man has shown over the years would suggest not. And Cowboy Cerrone?

If anyone thinks for a single moment that Donald Cerrone would agree to something as pedestrian and ill-planned as throwing a fight, they need to remove themselves from the fandom.

Again, however, the narrative was written before the fight. Literally. From the second the fight was announced, there were accusations that the fix was in.

The second talking point, spouted well in advance by those dismissive of McGregor, is that Donald Cerrone is a can. Washed up. These are quite often the same souls who were no doubt touting the merits of Dad Cerrone just three fights ago, the one submitting Mike Perry at welterweight and picking apart Al Iaquinta at lightweight.

The reality is, Cerrone’s a top-tier fighter who has always struggled with slow starts. Against McGregor, he was booked into a match-up against an opponent who starts fast, one who has pin-point accuracy and heavy hands. Favorable booking for McGregor? Perhaps, but Cerrone had his own path to victory. Had the fight gone on, he might have found that path.

He didn’t. Cowboy lost. So be it. He lives to ride — and fight — another day.

This is not to simply sing the praises of Conor McGregor. The Irish star is as notorious outside the cage as in it these days, and for good (or bad) reason. Conor the Athlete and Conor the Man are two different animals, however. Whatever you think of Conor the Man — who has been public enemy number one since attacking a fighter bus at UFC 223 — trying to twist the narrative or discredit the feats of Cerrone is downright childish. Cerrone holds more records than just about anyone in the UFC, and remains its winningest fighter.

Of course, the court of public opinion seems to be all that matters these days. McGregor’s indiscretions, including a pair of alleged sexual assault investigations that have not led to a single charge over the course of an entire year, have made him worthy of lynching in a culture that has quickly done away with any notion of due process. That’s a debate for another day. And if those allegations are enough for you to side against McGregor, so be it. That’s understandable — but trying to discredit the promotion, or McGregor’s opponent, in order to fit your narrative that McGregor is somehow a poor fighter is downright sad.

Besides, the UFC does more than enough on its own when it comes to deserving criticism.

MMA fans are a passionate bunch, and without them, there’s no sport. But at the same time, it’s clear some have simply lost touch with reality when it comes to one of the sport’s most controversial stars.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Behind the scenes, before the fight was booked, in negotiations Dana White convinces Cowboy that ‘the fans want a knockout’ and, before inking the fight, reminds Cowboy that the payout is millions of dollars, win or lose.. all Cowboy has to do is ‘give the fans what they want’ and none of that grappling B.S. cuz ‘fans don’t wanna see that shit in a McGregor fight’. They produce their own rigged analytics and PPV numbers to convince Cowboy.

    Cowboy catches Dana’s drift, there is a gentleman’s agreement, Dana knows he can trust Cowboy.. Subconsciously Cowboy knows he’s to stand in there for the greater good of the company to earn his biggest paycheck yet.

    *PRESTO*

    A fighter agrees to dive without really agreeing to dive consciously.

    And here we are.

    …remember Mayweather vs Mac was literally a BILLION dollar fight.

    Billion with a B, my ninja..

    The money is in setting up another boxing match with Pac-man or Mayweather.. and other super fights, right(?)

    The reason Cowboy was chosen was bcuz he indirectly (and subconsciously) agreed to pull this off for Dana..

    Which, again, explains why it was at 170 lbs instead of 155 – why cut weight for a rigged fight(?)

    Which explains the no trash talking – why talk shit and play mental warfare for rigged fight(?) Etc.

    Cowboy didn’t land a single strike. He threw 1 head kick.

    Do you know how rare that is in the UFC. It almost never happens, if at all.. we should look it up.

    Shit was a set up…

    When I was 6 years old I figured out the WWF was fake and it hurt lol… Dana White just did that shit to us again!

  2. What fighter stands there taking repeated shots without any movement? In the clinch he eats 4 shoulders, doesn’t turn his head at all. Aside from that, I believe more actual fans of the mma are upset with Conor because he’s given his pick of fights. He hasn’t worked through the ranks in any way. He went from #8 Siver to fighting Mendez who had 2 weeks notice. Yes he beat Aldo, it was great, but Aldo hasn’t done anything since the loss. Alvarez went on a terror and was hit and miss prior and after that fight. After that who does he fight?? Diaz. Diaz is middle of the road in 155. He got handled by Khabib. Then he takes Cerrone who is just as you said, slow starter and unpredictable on his performance.
    There isn’t a fix, as much as a stunt to boost Conor once again to give him another shot at championship, rather than have him face actual contenders.

  3. Yeah sorry but this was so obviously fake, fanboys just dont want to admit their sport is a panto. Like they said in the press conference they’re entertainers…

  4. Who r they fooling here!!? We all saw the same fight right? The one which was OBVIOUSLY RIGGED! Comon Dana stop hiding, just like you were hiding that prostitute on your lap in the casino, ha got caught on camera mate! They could not make it any clearer of a fixed fight! Damm that is really sad. I hope McRapist gets mopped on the octa floor again by Khabib soon. Perhaps break his Jaw this time…please…

  5. Sorry to have to attack this idiot fan boy author, but you can clearly see that the fight is rigged if you are somehow able to watch it without your bias.

    Trying to justify your bias with your “logic” is really just making up excuses how the fight could not have possibly have been fixed.

    There is actually a lot more plausible “logic” that arguing why the fight could have been fixed but you don’t need that as you can clearly see how the fight unfolded (casuals won’t be able to though).

    You can look up “Pride” which fixed fights and “Pride” was bought by UFC.

    McGregor is supposed to be a top contender but he doesn’t fight one of the top 2-4 ranked fighters to earn a title shot. Dana still has his lips on McGregor’s balls so he gives him a fixed win against a top 10 fighter and immediately get a title shot after.

    You can also see how McGregor was avoiding the question of “Why 170?” in interviews and now you know that it was to avoid weight cutting for a fixed fight.

  6. Be Real for once!! Cerrone IS WASHED UP!!! COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY WASHED UP!!! They didnt need to ask anyone to take a fall!! The UFC chose cerrone because they arent stupid… They needed Connor to make a splash to regenerate interest in a guy who couldnt knock a 55 year old man off his barstool!! Cowboy looked like he was going thru withdrawl, it was pathetic, and did he even throw a punch??? Nope he didnt not 1 punch !! Why cuz he is a shell of himself, he got pummeled in back to back fights and was better suited for a stint in rehab! All the suckers took the bait and they all swear Connor is back, a brand new man! Lmao khabib made him look like a rag doll and promptly whooped his ass 7 ways til Sunday… These are facts it is what it is… Cowboy wouldnt have beaten an underfed, blind hobbit PERIOD!! UFC DIDNT NEED TO FIX IT, THEY LINED IT UP AND GUESS WHAT ? CONNOR LOOKED AMAZING !! waiste of money and time !!!

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