Boat hobbyist Conor McGregor is apparently pissed that the UFC will strip him of his lightweight championship belt and give it to the winner of this weekend’s Max Holloway-Khabib Nurmagomedov fight. McGregor won the belt in Nov. 2016 and has functionally ruined the promotion’s most compelling division with his staunch refusal to defend it, but he was mad enough to crash today’s UFC press event in Brooklyn and start throwing shit.
McGregor’s spent his lengthy layoff doing this sort of thing, so it’s not exactly surprising that he’d go wild before an event expressly designed around his absence. Courtesy of fighter Felice Herrig’s Instagram, here he is coming at a bus with a barricade.
According to reporters on the scene, McGregor and his entourage swarmed busses full of fighters, including Nurmagomedov, and threw chairs and anything else that wasn’t pinned down. Michael Chiesa, who’s fighting Anthony Pettis, suffered a laceration on his forehead, and it’s not yet clear whether he’ll be able to fight. McGregor was apparently calling for someone to get out of a bus and fight him. That person might Nurmagomedov, and it might have something to do with an altercation involving Nurmagomedov and McGregor ally Artem Lobov.
“Local authorities” are apparently en route, but McGregor already sprinted out and fled.
We’ll update this post if we figure out what the hell’s going on.
Update (3:22 p.m. ET): Okay!
Update (6:56 p.m. ET): Dana was apparently full of shit, as there is no warrant out for McGregor’s arrest, though the NYPD does want to chat with him.
A UFC VP says he thought he was going to die when the attack went down.
Chiesa went to the hospital and still wants to fight. One issue here is that he lost several hours of time he could have spent cutting weight.
And finally, Nurmagomedov spoke to Ariel Helwani and does not seem bothered.
“I am laughing inside,” Nurmagomedov said. “You broke window? Why? Come inside. You know UFC don’t let you come inside. If you real gangster why don’t you come inside?
“This is big history gangster place. Brooklyn. You want to talk to me? Send me location. We have to talk? I am gonna come, no problem.
“I grew up like this. I don’t grow up throwing chairs at window. This is not my bus.”
Update (10:42 p.m. ET): Two fights have now been canceled, both reportedly due to McGregor-caused injuries. Michael Chiesa’s fight with Anthony Pettis has been scrapped due to the forehead lacerations that Chiesa suffered when McGregor attacked his bus. That fight was on the pay-per-view card.
Ray Borg took a shard of glass to the eye, and he will no longer fight Brandon Moreno on the undercard due to his injuries.
During today’s media event at Barclays Center to promote UFC 223: Khabib vs. Holloway, Conor McGregor and Artem Lobov entered the building accompanied by over a dozen individuals.
The group, which included McGregor and Lobov, vandalized the vehicle that contained a number of athletes competing at the event taking place this weekend. NYPD was immediately alerted and is currently in the process of investigating the situation. UFC is working very closely with the New York Athletic Commission, Barclays Center security and law enforcement authorities. All parties are working together to ensure the highest standard of proper safety precautions are implemented to protect the fans and athletes.
The organization deems today’s disruption completely unacceptable and is currently working on the consequences that will follow. Immediately, Lobov has been removed from this weekend’s card and individuals involved in the incident are not welcome at tomorrow’s ceremonial weigh-in or Saturday’s event at Barclays Center.”