Behind Ronda Rousey, it can be argued that interim featherweight champion Conor McGregor (pictured) is the UFC’s biggest star. Something that was hard not to overlook following Rousey’s shocking upset loss to Holly Holm last month at UFC 193 was the torrid pre-fight promotional work Rousey willingly took on, while Holm had the luxury of merely focusing on the fight.
Some believe Rousey’s tireless work to promote the pay-per-view broadcast played a part in her lackluster performance.
Less than 10 days away from UFC 194, what is expected to be the company’s biggest PPV of the year, that burden has fallen squarely on McGregor’s shoulders, despite the fact UFC featherweight champ Jose Aldo doesn’t have the “interim” label on his business card.
Is the UFC running the risk of McGregor pulling a Rousey given his hectic media obligations? McGregor doesn’t believe so.
“I embrace it. It’s part of the game,” McGregor said of his promotional duties during Wednesday’s UFC 194 conference call. “With Ronda she goes out, she does even more in reality than me. But I feel there were some other issues, some personal issues [with Ronda]. For me I just handle my own business, it’s part of the game.
“Right now, tonight, I’m gonna head out to do the Jimmy Kimmel show, then after that I head back to my gym to do some traditional sparring tonight. I carry on as business as usual. This is the life I have created and there’s no one better at this. Maybe Ronda got too much into the media and maybe didn’t focus as much on her training in that current time, but for me I have the perfect balance. I’m living good and I’m training hard.”
Even if the workload was too much for McGregor, what else is he supposed to say? One thing’s for sure, McGregor is certainly living the good life based on his Instagram account, where he flaunts one extravagant purchase after another.
Work hard, spend hard and fight even harder – that seems to be McGregor’s mantra. Let’s see if this magic formula pays dividends in the biggest fight of his life on December 12.