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Dana White: Conor McGregor’s UFC 223 melee is the ‘most disgusting thing that has ever happened’ in UFC history

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Dana White was not happy with Conor McGregor.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Conor McGregor’s entry into UFC 223 fight week was an explosive one.

McGregor and his entourage stormed into Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Thursday afternoon and incited a melee following UFC 223’s media day, attacking one of the UFC fighter buses in a wild scene that left several individuals shaken up and lightweight contender Michael Chiesa seeking medical attention with multiple lacerations.

“This is the most disgusting thing that has ever happened in the history of the company, and there is a warrant out for Conor McGregor’s arrest,” UFC president Dana White told reporters after the incident (video via MMA Junkie). “And they’re looking for him right now. His plane cannot take off, he cannot leave the state of New York with this warrant. He’ll be grounded, and I’m assuming eventually if they don’t catch him, he’ll turn himself in. You can imagine he’s going to be sued beyond belief and this was a real bad career move for him.”

A representative for the New York Police Department told MMA Fighting that as of Thursday afternoon there is no outstanding warrant for McGregor’s arrest, although authorities are currently looking to speak to the UFC lightweight champion. No charges have been filed at the time of this writing.

McGregor’s longtime teammate, Artem Lobov, was involved in the melee and has subsequently been pulled from his UFC 223 fight against Alex Caceres, White said.

Lobov was involved in a hotel altercation with UFC 223 headliner Khabib Nurmagomedov and Nurmagomedov’s team on Tuesday.

Nurmagomedov and his team were inside the bus McGregor attacked on Thursday.

The entire situation left White furious.

“What happened here today is Conor and approximately 20 guys apparently were let in through the doors by The Mac Life guys, who were credentialed here,” White said. “They opened the doors for him through an entrance, they stormed the building, got down to the loading docks where the fighters were getting on the buses and started to attack the buses, throwing trash cans and dollies, things like that, broke one of the windows and cut Michael Chiesa really bad. He cut his head, he cut his face. Rose Namajunas apparently was almost hit. She’s super upset right now and basically left and walked back to the hotel. And one of our employees — broke one of our employee’s knuckles. Other injuries, and obviously everybody’s shaken up when 30 thugs storm a [bus]. These guys were all cutting weight and getting ready for a fight.

“This is the type of bad decision you make that turns a lot of people against you. He attacked a bus. Listen, he’s got some beef with Khabib because of the Artem thing that went down. You don’t come into Barclays Center, attack people who in a bus who are fighting the next day, and the worst part is the women who were on the bus. They’re fighters — Rose is a fighter and Karolina is a fighter — but these goons are throwing bike racks and chairs and things like that through the windows of the bus and didn’t care who they hit or who they hurt.

“I don’t know if [McGregor is] on drugs, or what his deal is. But to come and do this and to act like this — you’re talking about a guy who had a baby,” White added. “He just had a kid. This is how you’re acting? You have a son at home.”

White was adamant that McGregor will be disciplined for his actions, although he declined to say to what degree. He said he has not spoken to McGregor since the incident and did not want to.

McGregor was expected to be stripped of his lightweight title on Saturday at UFC 223.

When asked Thursday if he still wants to be in the Conor McGregor business, White’s answer was cryptic.

“Right now, no, absolutely not,” White said. “I mean, do you want to be in business with Conor McGregor right now? Do you want to chase this guy around for interviews and buy his fights? Do you? I don’t think anybody is going to want to right now. I think everybody is going to be pretty disgusted with Conor McGregor right now. Listen, you don’t like Khabib and you don’t like what happened or whatever? Then fight Khabib.

“The police are going to take care of Conor. The police are going to handle Conor, and I know a handful of people here already that are filing lawsuits against Conor McGregor. God knows how many lawsuits he’s going to have by the time this is done.

“What happened today was criminal, disgusting, despicable, makes me sick, and we as an organization need to make sure that this never happens again.”