Former two division UFC champion Conor McGregor and some close pals attacked a bus full of fighters a mere few days before UFC 223.
While many have blamed McGregor for the whole incident, one thing UFC President Dana White wants to point out was the whole situation was instigated by UFC Lightweight Champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and his crew.
“Conor can’t fight in New York now,” White said on The Jim Rome Show. “We did an $18 million gate in New York (at UFC 205 with McGregor vs. Eddie Alvarez), and (the New York State Athletic Commission) won’t have him fight in New York now. We’re going to take all that and risk that, for what? What would be the purpose? Who’s to say it would play out this way? Who’s to say Conor wouldn’t do any jail time, or what else could’ve happened – other commissions could’ve possibly not allowed him to fight, like New York won’t. So believe me, it’s very, very far-fetched. But fighters think the world is against them. What Khabib forgets is, him and his crew had surrounded Artem (Lobov), Conor’s friend, and Khabib slapped him in the face. That’s how this whole thing got started. People forget this started with Khabib, it didn’t start with Conor.”
McGregor would be the one who faced penalties for the attack, including a hefty fine and community service, plus potential lawsuits from fighters who were affected by the attack.
“There were a lot of people that were speculating that we had something to do with (the bus attack),” White said. “We’re going to take our biggest star in the sport – which, actually, at the time, we were talking about not only getting a new deal done with Conor, but Conor actually fighting in Brazil – (and ask him to do the bus incident)?”
UFC 229 takes place on Saturday, October 6 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada with Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.