UFC President Dana White has admitted that even he is unsure whether lightweight champion Conor McGregor will ever fight again after earning a fortune in his boxing debut against Floyd Mayweather Jr earlier this year.
“Conor might never fight again,” White told reporters at a UFC 218 media lunch yesterday. “The guy’s got $100 million.
“I’ve got guys that made less than that and were lawyers and went to school their whole life and quit working.
“Try to get up and get punched in the face every day when you’ve got $100 million in the bank,” White continued. “Money changes everything with a lot of people.”
McGregor has been hitting the headlines for all the wrong reasons lately, particularly in his native Dublin, where he struck a referee and Bellator employee during an event a few weeks ago, while even more worryingly, reports in the UK tabloids in recent days have alleged that McGregor got involved in a punch-up at a pub this past weekend.
The details of the incident remain unconfirmed, but it’s alleged that after striking one customer, McGregor then hit another who is believed to be an associate of gangland figure Graham ‘The Wig’ Whelan, a convincted drug dealer and member of the Kinahan clan.
Addressing the rumor, White questioned whether it was true, but admitted that it if was then McGregor could be in hot water.
“Can’t be a good thing for Conor, but you never know. I don’t know how that stuff works. I didn’t know any of those guys. But I’m sure it can be worked out, too. Jake LaMotta’s brother beat the s*** out of a wise guy, too, and they figured it out.”
White went on to reference Jon Jones as a fighter who had gone off-the-rails after finding fame and fortune in the Octagon.
“I don’t know if you guys remember in the very beginning with Jon Jones.
“There’s no doubt the talent was there. I used to go, ‘The guy is talented, but he’s young, he’s rich, he’s the king of the world now. Hopefully he can keep it together.’
“That was way before the crazy s*** started to happen. And there it is. It happens.”
As such, he’s now voicing concerns that McGregor could be at risk of heading down the same path.
“He’s a young, rich kid who is a god in Ireland,” White said. “That’s not the healthiest environment either. It’s all part of it.
“When he travels, he’s got people for days with him. When you make that kind of money, you’re that famous and you’re a professional athlete, you’re gonna have an overload of cling-ons.”