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Revealed: UFC Top Brass Shock At Conor McGregor Situation

Revealed: UFC Top Brass Shock At Conor McGregor Situation

Referee ‘Big’ John McCarthy revealed UFC chairman Lorenzo Fertitta’s reaction at UFC 197 last weekend to the Conor McGregor debacle.

That debacle, of course, concerns Fertitta’s most prized star in ‘The Notorious’ Conor McGregor, who’s refusal to attend a press conference and shoot a commercial saw him pulled from the main event of UFC 200.

McGregor’s conduct during the public dispute wouldn’t have gone well with the UFC executives either, with the Dubliner publically tagging Fertitta in a rogue Tweet earlier this week.

The UFC’s response? Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier were then pencilled in to headline the marquee July 9 event.

Conor’s express refusal to fulfil promotional duties, despite being handsomely rewarded financially for doing so, mystified Lorenzo Fertitta in particular, per John McCarthy.

McCarthy, who officiated the Irishman’s flash 13 second win over Jose Aldo at UFC 194, gave the behind the scenes insight on his ‘Let’s Get It On‘ podcast (h/t Reddit MMA).

“I talked to Lorenzo Fertitta at UFC 197, standing in the back, and we started talking. He said ‘I never thought that when I had a guy who was guaranteed $10 million, that I would have a problem with him.'”

With UFC president Dana White usually the prominent figurehead for the company, it’s intriguing to hear from the real power broker of the promotion.

UFC 194: Aldo vs. McGregor

Just last December, Fertitta stated that the featherweight champion would become the UFC’s first fighter to break the $100m mark, and is now likely left wondering where it all went wrong.

“In this situation, Conor played a hand of poker, but these people know how to play too”, ‘Big John continued.

“Although they would love to have Conor on that card, he put them in a situation where they said; ‘No problem, we’ve got other guys’. He was guaranteed to make $10m for that fight – meaning he was going to make more. That’s a life changing amount of money.”

As per Dana White, McGregor is due to return soon at any of UFC 201 to 203. McCarthy interestingly points out that although Conor’s next event could break records, the investment made in the blockbuster 200 event in comparison means that he won’t yield nearly as much of a payday.

BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 17: Conor McGregor punches Max Holloway in their featherweight bout at TD Garden on August 17, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA – AUGUST 17: Conor McGregor punches Max Holloway in their featherweight bout at TD Garden on August 17, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

“That $10 million might not be $10 million the next time he fights because it’s not UFC 200 and the amount of money that they’re looking to put in to promote that show and the amount of money they’re looking to make off of that show is going to be different from UFC 201 – it just is. You look and you go; ‘Well, was not coming from Iceland to do that mini-tour worth the amount of money that you’re actually going to lose?’

Because there’s no way he’s going to get paid that same amount.

He may make that $10 million in a fight, but it could have been that he made a lot more than the $10 million in that UFC 200 fight.”

The onus is now on McGregor to prove that his name will indeed reign.

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Author: Chris Kelleher

Student whose interests lie in sports ranging from Darts to MMA, with the likes of Golf, Boxing and Soccer in between. Closet wrestling fan and a lover of sports psychology and stiff jabs.