Conor 'The Notorious' McGregor is arguably more at home in front of a camera than he is in the octagon. Of course, that could be because he's had nearly just as much practice in front of the cameras as he has inside the octagon. With his outlandish antics and quick witted tongue, McGregor has changed the nature of the pre-fight media tour seemingly forever.
Speaking to Severe MMA's Andrew McGahon, the fighting Irishman covered an array of topics from Rafael Dos Anjos, Cerrone, the move to 170lbs and his much rumoured relationship with UFC president Dana White.
Below we've highlighted and covered some of the key talking points from one of Mystic Mac's best interviews to date.
The featherweight champ isn't one to hand out compliments to other fighters, especially when he feels they are undeserving of his praise. As we've came to expect from McGregor, he was less than complimentary when speaking about Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone and his last fight against Rafael Dos Anjos.
Cerrone pussied out on that one big time. I mean that's why he can fight again next week.
He quit in there, inside that octagon. That's why he can go now next week, and he can say 'aww I fight every week' and this and that but, you can fight every week if you're go in and quit. If you're willing to die in their, then you wouldn't be able to have those turnarounds.
'I am doing whatever the f*** I want'
It's no secret that McGregor is, and certainly will, be given more opportunities than most on the UFC roster. Although many view him as the golden child of the UFC, to be fair to the featherweight champion, it is all a product of his own hard work and success.
Many fans and fighters have been angry at 'The Notorious' one being given what seems like preferential treatment. In a controversial move, the UFC gave McGregor a lightweight title shot straight off the bat, without having to go through the divisions ranks or vacate his featherweight belt.
Thankfully, Conor McGregor had a response for those people who felt like the Irishman was doing whatever he wanted...
I am picking what I want, and I am doing what I want. When you can rack up $400 million in revenue for the company, in back to back events, you can do whatever the f*** you want. I'm living the whatever the f*** I want life. That's the life I live. Whatever I want, whenever I want. I have earned that through handwork, through sacrifice and that's it. Through victory.
Moving to 170lbs at UFC 200
Recently Conor's coach, Coach Kavanagh, made the insinuation that McGregor could have another title fight, at another weight, at UFC 200. To many this seems utterly insane, as inside a calendar year, McGregor will go up not one, but two weight classes.
However, not to be one thrown off by a challenge, McGregor himself is confident of making the jump to 170lbs. The Dublin native has his heart firmly set on becoming the first man ever to hold 3 UFC world championship belts, at three different weight classes.
Everyone I'm sparring is well over welterweight. I've got middleweights coming in fresh to try to wear me down. So why not go up?
They get slower and they get less free up there. They're stiffer. They're even more stuck than the lightweight division. I'll keep going, keep eating, keep training. I'll keep going until f****** all the belts are wrapped up.
The stagnation of MMA
Love him or hate him, Conor McGregor has breathed fresh life into the UFC/MMA world. With his bravado and performances he has gained millions of fans around the world, increasing the reputation and notoriety of the UFC promotion, while also gaining the respect of those in the fighting world through his technique.
One thing that McGregor has always been vocal about, is how above everyone else he is. Whether it be his obsession with movement, or claims that he's here to take over not simply take part, the Irishman clearly feels that the MMA world is at a standstill, and he's here to shake things up.
How many times have you seen a champion instantly go up? How many years have you heard about super-fights and nothing? How many times have you heard about a little sore toe? There's pussies everywhere in this game.
I'm here to fight. I'm here to win every belt and then I'm gone. I'll see the game later. I'll walk away from this game, I'll set it ablaze and walk away.
His relationship with Dana White & Lorenzo Fertitta
A lot has been made about the meteoric rise of Conor McGregor in the world of MMA and what repercussions it could have for his relationship with the UFC. The Notorious one has entered a league of his own, becoming more than just a mixed martial artist. He is a bonafide rockstar, and questions have been raised over his relationship with head honchos within the promotion.
MMA journalist Jeremy Blotter previously claimed that McGregor had frozen out UFC president Dana White, alluding to the idea that the star would breakaway from the UFC to pursue his own business ventures. Dana White was quick to dismiss these rumours via his personal twitter, and now McGregor has finally opened up about it.
That’s all horseshit, that is. I have a great relationship with Lorenzo and a great relationship with Dana. Don’t get me wrong, I’m climbing that corporate ladder every damn day and we will be neck and neck.
Maybe somewhere along the line I will take that lions share. But we will always be together. Loyalty is what I have. They gave me this, they are helping me with this and I am helping them, we are a team, so much respect to Dana, much respect to Lorenzo, much respect to everyone involved in the UFC.
I’m not trying to break out, I’m just trying to grow, be eye-to-eye and get my share of the f****** pie and that’s it and they know that. I will always be in association with Zuffa and the great team at the UFC, it’s an honour to grow with this company.
Thanks has to go to SevereMMA for an insightful and all round great interview. You can check out the full interview below, courtesy of their official YouTube channel
Conor McGregor will soon square off against lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos in what is undoubtedly his biggest challenge to date. The featherweight champion is looking to make history by becoming the first UFC fighter to ever hold two consecutive belts at different weight classes. If anyone can do it... It just might be Conor 'The Notorious' McGregor.
We'll find out on March 5, live from Las Vegas as the two go head to head at UFC 196.