Back when Conor McGregor first got the call to enter the UFC, he was a two-division champion for Europe’s Cage Warriors promotion.
Holding both the featherweight and lightweight titles for the respected organization, McGregor would leave to the UFC before ever defending a belt.
Now, as Conor’s star power has skyrocketed, he’s been the topic of much criticism for once again, not defending a world title, this time under the UFC banner.
McGregor beat Jose Aldo in 13-seconds to become the promotion’s featherweight world champion. He would then move up in weight and knock out Eddie Alvarez to capture UFC gold in a second weight-class.
Once he won the UFC’s 155 pound world title, the promotion stripped him of the featherweight belt, but not before letting him fight three-times outside of the division.
Now, as we approach three-weeks out from UFC 223, McGregor is expected to get stripped of his second UFC world title. He’s already broken the record for a champion’s days without a title defense, and now his striking coach Owen Roddy addresses the elephant in the room.
Check it out:
“You know, and at the moment – he didn’t get to defend his featherweight belt because at the time there was nobody there for him to fight against, there just wasn’t the opponent there. So, unfortunately, that’s why he had to give it up, you know what I mean? And that’s been the case at lightweight as well, there wasn’t the name to fight.”
“At the end of the day, Conor, he’s a superstar now, and he deserves the big, big paychecks that he’s garnered – obviously in his last boxing fight – he deserves these big paychecks, and there hasn’t been a big name in the UFC to match him.”
“But, you know, as I said, whoever kicks up the biggest fuss and gets the biggest, I suppose fan base behind them, he will fight. And whether it’s at featherweight, whether it’s at lightweight, or whether it’s at a different weight, you know, wherever the biggest fight is, I’m sure that’s the one Conor will take because that’s what he’s about.
“He’s not afraid to defend any belt, he’s not afraid to fight anybody, but he wants to fight the biggest fights possible. He’s the biggest name in the sport and he wants the biggest fights that he could possibly do, you know what I mean? I think that’s why people love him.”
Here’s the full interview: