herald

Friday 17 November 2017

Conor's Croker tease 'nothing to do with a fight'

Conor McGregor with son Conor Jnr at Croke Park
Conor McGregor with son Conor Jnr at Croke Park
John Kavanagh

Conor McGregor's appearance at Croke Park last week was for a lucrative ad campaign and had nothing to do with a bout at the GAA headquarters, the Herald can reveal.

The multi-millionaire fighter sparked rumours of a mega-fight at the stadium when he posted photos of himself in the ground, stating that he was working on "something big".

The fighter known as Notorious put the photos of himself and his son, Conor Jnr, across his social media accounts on Friday night.

Champion

"Down at Croke Park with my little champion tonight. I am working on something big with Betsafe down here. Stay tuned," he said.

A source at Croke Park later told the Herald that talk about the Crumlin boxer and MMA star being at the stadium to organise a fight was untrue.

"He was there to shoot an advertisement. It was nothing to do with a fight," the source said.

This will come as a body blow to thousands of avid supporters, who have been craving a McGregor fight in Dublin.

The last time he appeared in Ireland was during UFC Fight Night 46, when he defeated Diego Brandao by knockout at the 3Arena in July 2014.

He has since had seven UFC fights in the USA and most recently lost out in a Las Vegas boxing match with Floyd Mayweather - trips that have been costly for his army of travelling fans.

Speaking last year about the possibility of an Irish fight, McGregor's coach, John Kavanagh, played it down due to pay-per-view restrictions and the time difference between Ireland and Las Vegas.

"It would have to be at 5am. I don't think the authorities would allow it," said Kavanagh.

"Could you imagine a crowd at 5am? For Vegas pay-per-view, the main event always has to be at 10pm over there.

"Even the fight we just did in New York was at 1am. We were walking out and there were people yawning in the changing rooms.

"They always do it for Vegas. I don't quite know why. I guess they've done the numbers and it all makes sense.

"It's all down to pay-per-view. They did one in Sweden for a famous Swedish fighter. It was at 5.30am and there were people in the crowd fast asleep."

Rival

McGregor's next fight in the octagon is expected to be with arch-rival Nate Diaz, in what will be the third battle between the two in the past two years.

The fight is set to take place in Las Vegas again, most likely on December 30 at the T-Mobile Arena.

Meanwhile, Crumlin man McGregor could be in hot water after video emerged yesterday of him apparently using a homophobic slur in the aftermath of his teammate Artem Lobov's defeat in Gdansk, Poland, on Saturday night.

The clip shows McGregor consoling his friend and fellow fighter and appearing to use the word "f****t".

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