ByAmy Kaplan, writer at
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Amy Kaplan

Conor McGregor is taking on his biggest opponent, and a former UFC superstar is hoping "The Notorious" will not follow in his footsteps.

Tito Ortiz, who famously faced off with the UFC regarding pay and sat out of competition for almost a year as a result, spoke with Chael Sonnen on his podcast, "You're Welcome," this week about the mistakes he thinks McGregor is making with the promotion.

"I made some bad decisions, with the UFC, with Dana," Ortiz said. "I've been talked bad about from them, from Dana, and I look back on it and wish I would have done things a lot different."

McGregor recently refused to attend mandatory press obligations, citing his need to get back to training and was pulled from his scheduled UFC 200 bout with Nate Diaz as a result.

"I hope Conor makes the right decisions, and at the same time ... we're fighters, we only have a window of opportunity open for so long and we need to take advantage right then," he said.

Similarities between Ortiz and McGregor are striking. Ortiz was once the poster boy of the UFC as McGregor is considered today. Ortiz tried to use that stardom to leverage higher pay and eventually parted ways with the promotion, but it was ugly.

"He's only 28, let him sit out a little," Ortiz said. "Let him see how much money the other fighters can make at the UFC, which they can. UFC, they are the star."

McGregor has been vocal about his role in multi-million dollar shows, claiming he holds the current record for PPV buys.

"Conor's gonna have to sit out a year or two and cave, then ask what Dana or Lorenzo want him to do," Ortiz said.

McGregor is rumored to be fighting at UFC 201 or UFC 202. An announcement is yet to be made by the UFC. Ortiz, meanwhile, is signed to Bellator.

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