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Matchroom kingpin Eddie Hearn offered a withering assessment of the UFC claiming Conor McGregor “almost was the UFC” for a very long time.
The Irishman’s speed, power, and ruthlessness helped him become the first ever fighter to simultaneously hold UFC championships in two different weight divisions. However, McGregor’s personality, charisma, and ruthless verbal assassinations are almost as famous, if not more, than his ability in the Octagon or the Squared Circle.
His lucrative fight against Floyd Mayweather in 2017, which he reportedly pocketed around £24m, is the perfect example of how he was able to drive promotions and PPV sales when he had a microphone in his hand. And after offering a brief apology to UFC chief Dana White, Hearn claimed McGregor “almost was the UFC” for a very long time.
“He comes from a sport and a business where the brand is bigger than the talent, but he was one of the first that made the talent bigger than the brand,” Hearn said to JOE. “So Conor McGregor, sorry Dana and all my friends there, almost was UFC at one stage.
“He continues to be, globally, one of the most recognisable faces of sport.” McGregor has not been seen in the UFC or in Boxing since he broke his leg during his painful loss to Dustin Poirier in July 2021.
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It was the second consecutive time the US fighter was able to get the better of McGregor, having also knocked him out barely six months prior.
Nevertheless, this has not only failed to prompt Hearn to talk about McGregor in less admirable tones, but the Matchroom chief admitted he would love to promote a fight with the UFC legend.
“Conor McGregor, I mean he’s a promoter’s dream,” Hearn added. “You wouldn’t even need to do anything. You just announce the fight, let him do a press conference, and you can go on holiday. You know he’s one of a kind.
“Obviously I don’t know a huge amount about him or MMA apart from the fact he was very good. But what a character.”
- Conor Mcgregor
- Eddie Hearn
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