Depending on what time of the year it is, you might see Conor McGregor retired or not retired. Indeed, he is returning to the Octagon on Jan. 23 against Dustin Poirier.
McGregor is known arguably for his dominance in the UFC. He is also known for his “Notorious” trash talk and knockout power.
His journey to becoming a world-class UFC fighter was as unique as they come. In fact, he has a lot of humble beginnings that put him in a position like he is at today, one of the most popular fighters in the UFC for fans and online bettors alike.
Plumber from Dublin
McGregor spent a lot of his youth in Crumlin, Dublin. He eventually went to train in boxing at the Crumlin Boxing Club.
He did not have much interest in school, ultimately deciding to take on a plumbing apprenticeship after high school. He would continue to train and work, posting 12-hour workdays and then spend the remainder of the day training.
After giving up his job to focus on training full time, he knew that this is where it was: all or nothing. His parents heavily disagreed that the struggles were worth it.
After running through multiple fights and going 4-2 in Cage Warriors, he went on an eight-fight winning streak. Not only that, but he became a two-division champion and won all of those fights within the first two rounds.
UFC Fight Success
On April 6, 2013, McGregor made his Octagon debut in the UFC against Marcus Brimage with a first-round knockout. This fight, in particular, was the biggest stepping stone of his career and life. Just a week before his UFC debut, he picked up what was his last welfare check. It was worth 188 Euros, which was enough for him to make it by.
For his UFC victory, he won the Knockout of the Night bonus for $60,000. Needless to say, he has never gone back for those checks, but later in life named one of his boats “The 188.”
Fast forward to Dec. 12, 2015, and McGregor knocked out Jose Aldo in 13 seconds for a title fight. This allowed him to win the UFC Featherweight Champion belt and make him a favorite for those doing UFC betting.
Leading up to his rising success, he would need to defeat one fighter in particular. Unfortunately for him, it was an undefeated new champion in Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Khabib would dominate in their fight and thus prove that he was the better fighter. For years, the UFC had issues pairing the two again for a rematch, as there were other fighters in line more deserving of a title shot.
McGregor also made UFC news when he had legal issues along the way that set him back a few times. Overall, he was mostly lucky that things didn’t go any worse than what they were.
Now McGregor returns to face Poirier for a second time and is a slight favorite in the UFC odds. The last time these two met was back at UFC 178 in the featherweight division when McGregor won in the first round via TKO/KO.
A lot has changed tremendously for both fighters. Poirier is currently ranked as the second-best fighter in the lightweight division, while McGregor still holds his fourth-best ranking in the same division.
McGregor will be stepping in the octagon in arguably the best shape he has ever been in. He has changed his diet and become more strict, causing bulk gain and more muscle.
Overall, McGregor is an excellent example of a hard worker from humble beginnings to get where he is at today. By tuning into his next fight, you can see exactly why this is, and also see why people either love him or hate him.