Conor McGregor has been under a lot of fire for his recent actions. The Irishman punched a 50-year-old man at a pub this past April after he insulted his Proper 12 Irish Whiskey.
Footage only recently surfaced of McGregor’s actions, which seemingly pushed the public’s perception of “The Notorious” over the edge. He spoke to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani for a lengthy interview on Sports Center to offer his side of the story. McGregor said it doesn’t matter what happened in the bar, he was in the wrong and is taking accountability for his actions.
“I mean, in reality, it doesn’t matter what happened there,” McGregor said. “I was in the wrong. That man deserved to enjoy his time in the pub without it having to end the way it did. Although, five months ago it was, and I tried to make amends, and I made amends. Back then, the fans don’t even – that doesn’t even matter. I was in the wrong. I must come here before you and take accountability and take responsibility.
“I owe it to the people that have been supporting me. I owe it to my mother, my father, my family. I owe it to the people who trained me in martial arts. That’s not who I am. That’s not the reason I got into martial arts or studying combat sports. The reason I got into it was to defend against that type of scenario.
“So to see that – although months ago I have been taking steps and continuing making steps to do better, and be better, to see it, it’s like a dagger into my heart as a young martial artist. I’m just here to own up to that and move on and carry on and face what’s coming with it.”
McGregor claimed he’s making efforts to better himself as a person. He understands the influence he has on the younger generation and wants to get his head screwed on right in pursuit of his redemption, retribution, and respect.
“Look, in respect to the whole entire situation, we’ll let it play out with what happens with it. What happened was a little hazy for me also. It was many months ago like I said. And I have been making amends to make it not happen again and to be better. To be a better father, to be a better human, to be a better role model to these kids.
“I know a lot of kids are looking up to me and sometimes it kind of takes me back. But I have to realize that’s not the attitude or behavior of a leader, of a martial artist, of a champion. So I must get my head screwed on and just get back in the game and fight for redemption, retribution, respect. The things that made me the man I am, so that’s what I will do.”
Another repercussion from McGregor’s actions included backlash from his fellow mixed martial artists. McGregor admits he deserves the criticism because what he did was totally unacceptable.
“As far as, like, my fellow colleagues, I deserve to be called out on it. I deserve to be called out on that behavior. It’s just unacceptable. There’s no excuse to it. I deserve everything that comes my way with it. And as far as the fans and seeing the fans disappointed in me, it hurts me so much because I am a fan. Everything I’ve done is for the fans.
“I’m a fan-favorite fighter my whole entire career has been based for the fans. Never pulling out, never turning down weights, sport, rules, everything. I’ve always done it all to light the game up for the fans and to create fanfare. And to see them disappointed in me, it hurts me more than you ever know. Like I said, retribution, redemption, respect, I will come and I will regain all of those.”
What do you make of McGregor’s reaction to the entire incident?