Conor McGregor: The Most Notorious UFC Fighter of All Time

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Conor McGregor is one of the world’s most popular mixed martial artists. He has been called “The Notorious” for his aggressive fighting style and trash-talking.

The Irish-born fighter from Dublin, Ireland, became a member of UFC’s featherweight division in 2013.

He started as an amateur boxer before making his professional debut against Gary Morris at Crumlin Boxing Club on September 29th, 2008. He won by knockout with a left hook to win twenty seconds into round 2.

McGregor became UFC Featherweight Champion by defeating José Aldo Jr., considered one of the greatest upsets in MMA history!

In this article, I’ll talk more about the life and career of the one and only Notorious, Conor McGregor.

The Life and Career of Conor McGregor

Conor McGregor
Andrius Petrucenia, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Conor is a Mixed Martial Arts fighter who competes in the featherweight and lightweight divisions. He has also competed as a welterweight.

He first became most well-known for his UFC debut, where he knocked out Marcus Brimage comfortably in the first round.

On July 14, 1988, Conor McGregor was born in Crumlin, Dublin, to Tony and Magaret McGregor. He went to Gaelscoil (primary school) and Gaelcholáiste (secondary school) in Tallaght, a town in South Dublin. McGregor developed an interest in football during school.

His passion for football prompted him to join the Lourdes Celtic Football Club as a young player. McGregor developed a passion for Boxing when he was 12 years old. As a result, he joined Crumlin Boxing Club and began boxing.

After relocating to Lucan, Dublin, McGregor started a plumbing apprenticeship with his family. McGregor met Tom Egan, who later became a UFC fighter. The two started mixed martial arts training.

When did Conor McGregor start fighting in mixed martial arts?

Conor McGregor made his MMA debut with the ‘Irish Ring of Truth’ in Dublin on February 17, 2007. McGregor was triumphant in an amateur fight with Kieran Campbell. He was signed by the ‘Irish Cage of Truth’ after his win.

The next year, he began practicing at the Straight Blast Gym under John Kavanagh. He is left-handed and attacks from a southpaw posture, but he often uses traditional stances. Conor fought Gary Morris in his first career MMA fight on March 9, 2008, and won. He then defeated Mo Taylor.

Despite losing his featherweight debut to Artemij Sitenkov, he defeated Stephen Bailey in his next match. He also defeated Connor Dillon in his next fight, after which he returned to lightweight and faced Joseph Duffy but lost the match due to a kneebar.

Not so long after that, Conor lost again due to submission against Joseph Duffy at Cage Warriors 39.

These early losses in his MMA career seemed to have spurred him on, though, as he then went on an eight-fight winning streak between 2011-2012.

Conor claimed both the CWFC featherweight and lightweight championships in 2011 and 2012, making him the first European professional MMA fighter to win belts in two categories simultaneously.

Conor is one of many UFC fighters with the classic cauliflower ears found in many high-level MMA fighters in different competitions.

Is Conor McGregor left-handed and what’s his fighting stance?

Conor McGregor is left-handed and predominantly fights in a southpaw stance. Conor does have a high level of ambidexterity, as he can switch stances easily and use both fists effectively.

That being said, the Notorious is well known for his insanely accurate and powerful left hand. His left straight often sends opponents off balance, and his counter left hook has been the winning factor in multiple of his fights.

When Did the UFC Sign Conor?

Conor was signed to a multi-fight deal by the UFC in February 2013. He made his UFC debut against Marcus Brimage on April 6, 2013. After winning, he was awarded his first Knockout of the Night trophy.

Conor McGregor defeated Max Holloway in the UFC Fight Night 26 main event. Conor ripped his anterior cruciate ligament during his battle with Holloway, necessitating surgery. He was out of commission for ten months.

All of Conor’s Performance Of The Night Awards

After rehab, Conor fought Diego Brando in Dublin at UFC Fight Night 46 on July 19, 2014. He won the match and won first prize for Performance of the Night.

Conor fought Dustin Poirier at UFC 178 on September 27, 2014, after signing a second multi-fight deal with the UFC. He won the fight. Conor won his second Performance of the Night trophy, and Poirier suffered his first UFC defeat.

He defeated Dennis Siver at UFC Fight Night 59 on January 18, 2015, and claimed the fight. The event drew a total of 13,828 spectators. Conor earned his third Performance of the Night award with this win.

Conor was supposed to fight Aldo for the UFC Featherweight Championship at UFC 189. The Aldo-McGregor battle cost the UFC a lot of money to promote. However, it was revealed that Aldo had sustained a rib fracture and had withdrawn from the fight.

Conor’s battle with Chad Mendes for the Interim Featherweight Championship had Conor finally meet Aldo at UFC 194 in Las Vegas on December 12, 2015, in front of a record-breaking crowd.

The case shattered all existing milestones for a mixed martial arts event in the United States. Conor becomes the second-ever undisputed UFC Featherweight Champion. He also earned his fifth award for Performance of the Night.

Following that, Conor McGregor was set to challenge Rafael dos Anjos for the UFC Lightweight Championship. However, after breaking his foot, dos Anjos withdrew from the match. Many competitors were invited to take the stage in front of Conor.

Finally, Nate Diaz, a recent contender for the UFC Lightweight Championship, decided to fight Conor.

Conor started the fight by changing his stances before forming his signature left cross. Diaz forced him to the cage after he exhibited a variety of punches. Conor had 28 hits to Diaz’s 23. Diaz wobbled Conor many times during the match.

Conor eventually gives in to the submission hold. It was Conor’s third defeat overall and his first in the UFC. Both earned Fight of the Night incentives, and Conor was awarded the largest purse by any boxer in the company’s history, totaling $1,000,000.

In August 2016, a rematch with Diaz was held. At UFC 202, the fight was fought at welterweight. Conor took the replay and won. It was called the night’s Fight of the Night.

Conor defeated Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 on November 12, 2016.

After that win, Conor became the first “champ-champ” in UFC history as he simultaneously held belts across two weight classes in the UFC, both Featherweight and Lightweight divisions.

What was Conor McGregor’s biggest fight winnings?

Despite being an MMA star, Conor made the most winnings out of his fight against Floyd Mayweather, in which he talked away with over $85 million.

Conor made $25 million in the UFC, consisting mainly of pay-per-view sales at UFC 257 when he fought (and lost) to Dustin Poirier. Making him the highest-paid UFC fighter of all time.

That event was a perfect time for Dustin, too, as he earned the biggest pay packet of his career in a single fight. It was also a prime opportunity to promote his new Louisiana-style hot sauces.

When Did Conor Take A Break From UFC?

Conor took a break from UFC after securing the Lightweight Championship at UFC 205, as his first child was expected in May 2017. He also decided to promote a boxing match in August 2017 with Floyd Mayweather.

Conor was deprived of his Lightweight Championship following the end of UFC 223 on April 7 due to inactivity.

Conor McGregor fought Khabib Nurmagomedov for the UFC Lightweight Championship at UFC 229 on October 6 in Las Vegas to reclaim his title. However, Khabib defeated Conor in that fight.

The different sides of Conor McGregor

Whilst we might all know McGregor primarily as a professional mixed martial artist, he has other sides to his lifestyle and career. He’s a successful man across fighting, family, business, and philanthropy endeavors.

Conor as a Family Man

Conor comes from a large family based out of Dublin, Ireland. Conor was born and grew up in Crumlin, specifically.

Conor’s family consists of:

  • Tony McGregor – Conor’s father
  • Margaret McGregor – Conor’s mother
  • Aoife McGregor – Conor’s sister
  • Erin McGregor – Conor’s sister
  • Dee Devlin – Conor’s partner and mother of his children
  • Croia McGregor – Conor’s daughter
  • Conor Jack McGregor Jr. – Conor’s son

Conor’s wife

Dee Devlin is Conor McGregor’s fiance and long-term girlfriend. In 2020, they announced they were engaged to marry.

Is Conor McGregor a gypsy?

Conor is a working-class man from Dublin, Ireland. But he or his family were never traveling people or what is sometimes referred to as “gypsies”.

Conor as a Business Man

Conor has invested his money in several different businesses, some of his own and likely also that of other companies, as his accountants diversify his investments on autopilot.

It’s common for public figures with a high earning yield to pay some professionals to make most of the investments for them.

That said, Conor has had some pretty hands-on involvement with building his own businesses like the Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey.

Conor even took to creating his own fitness app and his very own MMA gloves, inspired by the competition in what is becoming a demanding market, like Trevor Wittman’s MMA gloves.

His fame means he can single-handedly generate a huge demand for gifts and merchandise for UFC fans across the globe. And many fighters are now following his example of being a smart businessperson with their brand.

Is Conor McGregor a billionaire?

Conor is not a billionaire. But he certainly is a millionaire. It’s tricky to know exactly how much Conor makes per year as he has a highly diversified brand and has invested interests in many things.

Not only is Conor still a practicing and competing MMA fighter in the UFC, but he’s also been notable as a boxer going against Floyd Mayweather.

His venture into the boxing exhibition world against Mayweather also brought him into the gift-buying interest of boxing fans across America and other nations, where boxing is a top spectator sport.

Alongside his sporting successes, his name is spread across other businesses like:

  • Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey – Conor’s whiskey brand, which sponsors (and appears in) many UFC events
  • McGregor FAST – a fitness app mirroring McGregor’s training techniques
  • August McGregor – a suits partnership with the August brand

How much is Conor McGregor worth?

Conor has a net worth in the region of $150 million. His worth comes from his pay-per-view sales for his fights in MMA and his own businesses like Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey, McGregor FAST app, and more.

Conor as a Philanthropist

Even with lots of news about Conor’s sometimes questionable ego, he has shown a soft spot in his heart for those in need, particularly in his home country and hometown.

Conor has taken steps to keep the MMA community alive in Ireland.

In 2020, Conor stepped in to help SBG Portarlington (a sister club to Conor’s hometown SBG Ireland in Dublin) survive the lockdowns that were causing them to close their gym otherwise.

What charities does Conor McGregor support?

Conor has shown support for charitable organizations such as:

  • DEBRA Ireland – which helps sufferers of the genetic skin condition epidermolysis bullosa (EB)
  • Focus Ireland – a non-profit based in Dublin, Ireland, to help homeless people
  • Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust – helps to alleviate families with the financial difficulties of repatriating bodies back to Ireland
  • Simon Community – a charity for helping homelessness in Ireland

Final Thoughts about Conor McGregor

Conor has influenced the sporting world so much that it’s hard to deny his impact, even if you don’t like him!

Many people have seen Conor’s problems with the law or questionable offenses and have made up their minds about him.

Whilst I don’t agree with some of the things he has done, we have to keep in mind that for people like Conor, who have some of the biggest attention and publicity in the world, it could be understandably challenging to keep your ego balanced.

On that note, Conor even hired Tony Robbins to support him as a life coach and surely helped him become the more level-headed version he is today.

Web Story: Conor McGregor Profile: The Notorious

What to read next

That’s covered the profile of Conor McGregor in detail, I have several more interesting articles about the UFC and its fighters that you’ll love:

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