That is to say, because he’s as phony a fucking three-dollar bill. A mirage. A Wolf ticket. The old proverbial “bridge for sale”. And you know what else? He’s a brilliant little fucker. No denying that much.
Now, you may like him, you may not. Either way, the point is simple. Conor McGregor is a product of his time. It’s a point in time where the truth matters a whole lot less than it used to, maybe less than it ever has. Perception is the thing now. Say something stupid about a minority group, a religion, or sexual orientation? Apologize, donate some money to charity, all will be forgiven. Get on the wrong side of anyting or anyone? Feign humility, ask for a second chance, you’ll be given one. Being an athlete or a public figure now is about figuring out what people want and giving it to them, truth be damned. Conor knows all of this. Conor plays the game, and well. Conor ain’t no dummy. UFC 189 will be proof of that.
Conor acts like an idiot because Chael Sonnen got rich doing the same thing. Went from an above average fighter and a non-draw to a guy people wanted to see catch a beating. Sonnen caught several, and got paid handsomely along the way.
Conor plays the money-making villain guy because Floyd Mayweather became the richest man in sports with that gig. Mayweather was arguably the best fighter in boxing before he became the money man, and the neat trick was, becoming “money” is what made him a ton of it. Before then, he was pretty boy Floyd. Same talent, same credentials, only minus most of the cash.
Conor plays the patriot because shit, since when has that failed to draw added interest and support to any endeavor? Most people are patriotic by nature. The Brits, the Brazilains, the ‘muricans. They all eat that shit raw. The Irish? Not only are they as fervent as anyone, but who else do they have to spport? To rally behind? To call their own?
Fish in a barrel, man.
Conor doesn’t believe a word he says. Not really. He doesn’t think he can out-wrestle Edgar. He’s scared to death of Chad Mendes’ big bombs. Hell, he doesn’t think he has anything, anything at all, for Jose Aldo, the #1 pound for pound fighter going.
But, shit was is he gonna do? Admit he’s not as good as he says he is when he knows that you all want so depserately to believe he’s the messiah? That, at last, here comes the dream concoction of the fighter who is 50% bravado, 50% heart. The perfect fighting machine. The mintiature sequel To Muhummad Ali. Is he dumb enough to rob you of your wildest fantasies?
Nah. Ain’t no money in that.
So Conor does his little dance. Calls people pussies. Steals Aldo’s title belt in front of throng of his countrymen like the cheeky middle-schooler, all for a laugh. For adultation. Conor flips off his opponent during the ref’s instruction for no reason, and for every reason. He wants to be the guy you love to hate, and that takes not only dedication, but it takes an understanding of all the little nuances. He’s been studying all the masters, and wants to be exactly what you desire, even if the actions defy all logic. He’s got you right where he wants you.
He really does have all the bases covered. Braggadocio. Defiance. Machismo. Patriotism. He’s nothing if not completely well-conceived.
For their part, the UFC couldn’t be happier. Dana White is thrilled, no, over the god damned moon at what a talker, what a whirlwind of publicity and hyperbolic magic this little dude has become. They, like the rest of you, are praying like hell this guy turns out to be legit.
Oh, Conor. You’ve made it this far. All you have to do now, to have everything you’ve ever dreamed of, to be the grand high exalted, never faulted, supreme king of everything, is win. Conor McGregor, if he beats Chad Mendes and then Jose Aldo, will be everything that he, and you, wanted him to be.
But he wont. Because he’s not. Conor McGregor is a phony. A complete an utter contrivance. Soon enough, this will be a matter of public record. If not Saturday at UFC 189, then whenever the Aldo fight finally happens.
The ride has been fun, for sure. But make no mistake, he took you for a ride. Worry not, though. It’s almost over now.