While the UFC and media continue to paint a picture of Conor McGregor striving for redemption in his upcoming main event clash with Donald Cerrone at UFC 246, John Kavanagh maintains that Conor McGregor’s Irish support is as rampant as ever based on what he has witnessed in the presence of “The Notorious”.
McGregor became a household name in Ireland through his capture of two UFC belts. Once considered a national treasure by many, the Dubliner’s stock has been perceived to have taken a hit in his home country over the last two years through a litany of outside-the-Octagon incidents.
Although there seems to be a lot less interest ahead of this fight as compared to McGregor’s initial UFC title run within the general Irish public, Kavanagh underlined that “The Notorious” is still inundated by fans when he appears publicly in Ireland.
When asked if he had noticed a drop in McGregor’s famed Irish support, the SBG head coach said the following:
“I’d love for people to spend a little bit of time, like I do, driving through town with Conor or having to call into a shop with Conor, and being mobbed for selfies and people shaking his hand and congratulating him,” said Kavanagh, as featured on a recent episode of MMA Fighting’s Eurobash podcast.
“I think people sometimes confuse Twitter life with real life and believe stuff on Twitter, but very, very few people are on Twitter. In real life, when you’re going through Dublin and the airport, there are crowds of people screaming and running up to us. I’m not sure I agree with that, maybe there will be a couple of people on Twitter that will write something nice after it if he wins, but I wouldn’t hold my breathe on that.”
Asked again if he had noticed a drop in McGregor’s Irish support in the aftermath of his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov, Kavanagh again insisted that he hadn’t.
“When I’m physically with him, no...all I see is mobs of fans.”
BT Sport Box Office will show Conor McGregor’s return to the Octagon, exclusively live on Saturday 18th January, as he takes on Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone. UFC 246 will cost just £19.95 and can be watched on BT TV, Virgin TV, Sky, online via the web or the BT Sport Box Office App.
Listen to John Kavanagh’s comments (20:00) on this week’s Eurobash UFC 246 preview.