This week is a historic week for MMA star Conor McGregor, and not just because he’s fighting Dustin Poirier.
It was 12 years ago yesterday when Conor McGregor sat in the stands as a fan at UFC 93 at the O2 Arena in Dublin, Ireland. McGregor watched as his fellow countryman Tom Egan fought in the first-ever UFC event held in Ireland. A fire got lit inside a 20-year-old Conor McGregor that night.
12 years ago today, Conor McGregor realized what he could become.
The UFC held its first event in Ireland, when UFC 93 took place at the O2 Arena in Dublin.
McGregor sat in the crowd and watched his fellow Irishman Tom Egan compete inside the Octagon. pic.twitter.com/I7rAwq81AV
— MMA History Today (@MMAHistoryToday) January 17, 2021
The road was not an easy one for McGregor. It’s easy to remember that Conor became the featherweight and lightweight champion simultaneously in the UFC. The first-ever fighter to hold two UFC belts at the same time. However, this was not the first time McGregor became the double champ. He accomplished that same feat in a promotion called Cage Warriors as well.
After becoming the first-ever professional European MMA fighter to hold two belts simultaneously in 2012, McGregor still had not received a call from the UFC. Conor was poor and on welfare and decided to become an apprentice plumber. Then Dana White came to Ireland to receive an award from Trinity College and everything changed.
McGregor Takes The UFC By Storm
All Dana heard about was this shit-talking Irishman that held two belts. The Irish were begging for Dana to sign The Notorious Conor McGregor to the UFC. Dana then met McGregor and knew he had a superstar. Just a few days later he was signed, McGregor won his very first UFC fight in just one minute and seven seconds, in Notorious fashion, by knockout. He continued to move up the latter and beat Max Holloway by unanimous decision, fighting half the fight on just one leg.
McGregor’s win over Holloway was followed up by a pair of first-round knockouts over Diego Brandao and his opponent this Saturday Dustin Poirier. His next fight was his first main event in the United States, versus Dennis Siver and it was six years ago to this day. It was a long fight by McGregor’s standards at the time, as it took him till the second round to knockout Siver to get his shot at his first UFC belt. However, McGregor did get his first-round knockout on this day in history when he knocked out Cowboy Cerrone one year ago to this day.
2 Conor McGregor anniversaries today:
First his victory vs Dennis Siver when he jumped the cage to get to Jose Aldo 6 years ago
Then one year ago vs Cowboy
— Spinnin Backfist (@SpinninBackfist) January 18, 2021
What makes McGregor so iconic is that he is relatable. He is a hard-working kid from the streets of Ireland that had a welfare check and a dream. McGregor refused to let his dreams fade away. Conor continued fighting. He worked as a plumber to get by, he went to bed hungry, and he never quit. McGregor is the embodiment of the fighting Irish.
What Lies Ahead
Fill up your pint or a glass of Proper 12 and grab your Irish flags, because this week in history is about to get sweeter for McGregor when he knocks out Dustin Poirier. The Notorious went from being a plumbers apprentice to the biggest fighter in MMA history. When McGregor fights, the world is watching. When you get booked to fight McGregor, “your wife brings out the red panties”. McGregor is not just the people’s champion of Ireland; he is the people’s champion of the world.
“There is no talent here, this is hard work. This is an obsession.” – Conor McGregor