Conor McGregor arrived at Barclays Center for the UFC 223 Media Day on Thursday to confront Khabib Nurmagomedov in retaliation for an altercation earlier in the week between Nurmagomedov and McGregor’s friend and training partner Artem Lobov. With a large entourage with him, McGregor made his way to the loading area where fighters, their camps and UFC employees were on buses about to be transported back to the fighter hotel. A chaotic scene unfolded where McGregor and crew attacked the buses causing damage and injuring two fighters, among others.
Following the incident, McGregor fled Barclays Center and later turned himself in to authorities where he was charged with three counts of misdemeanor assault and felony criminal mischief. Before surrendering to law enforcement, UFC president Dana White spoke with McGregor via text messages.
“We had a text session yesterday that was not very good,” White said while appearing on ESPN this morning. White stated that McGregor was unapologetic for the incident but was apologetic about those that were injured and caught in the middle.
“He said that he was apologetic toward Rose because Rose Namajunas was very upset and obviously Michael Chiesa. He didn’t know at the time that Ray Borg was hurt too. He was apologetic about the people that he wasn’t trying to hurt, but he felt like the Khabib thing had to be done,” said White.
After the incident, social media blew up with criticisms, excuses and conspiracy theories suggesting the melee was a publicity stunt. White vehemently denied that the altercation was a stunt.
“This is the last stunt on Earth we would ever pull. This is embarrassing for the sport and obviously for the UFC. This is the furthest thing from a stunt. This is bad. Stunts don’t get people thrown in jail with counts of criminal activity,” he said.
“He had to turn himself in to authorities. His passport was tagged so he couldn’t get on his private jet and fly back to Ireland. Conor’s in a lot of trouble.”
After this weekend’s event, White will travel back to Las Vegas and sit down with his staff and decide what disciplinary action to take against “The Notorious.”
“This is bigger than is Conor McGregor getting fired. There’s just so many more moving pieces to this thing. And it’s so bad this guy had to turn himself in and he’s probably going to be a convicted felon when this is over,” White said.
(Courtesy of ESPN)