Arguably the most entertaining UFC fighter of all time, we delve into the archive to pick out the very best of the Irishman over the years.
It’s almost time. On Saturday night Conor McGregor is set to do battle with Dustin Poirier in a trilogy about, as one of the all-time UFC greats bids to propel himself back into lightweight title contention.
From spine-tingling promos to crazy knockouts, the Irishman has provided fans with some unforgettable moments so read (and watch) on to find out what makes the top 10.
UFC 202: Conor McGregor sits down with BT Sport
We kick things off with an exclusive interview as Caroline Pearce spoke to McGregor ahead of his rematch with Nate Diaz at UFC 202.
Diaz had inflicted Notorious’ first defeat in the UFC, but in an 11-minute chat a bespectacled McGregor spoke introspectively about the mistakes he’d made at UFC 196 and how he’d rectify them in the rematch.
“I learned that the sun rises the next day,” he said. “And I learned that I love this business.”
McGregor would go on to take care of business at the T-Mobile Arena in August 2016, with a majority decision win in what was then the most bought UFC pay-per-view of all time.
Conor McGregor taps out to Nate Diaz in huge UFC 196 upset
Next up on the list is the moment that inspired the above interview and one that UFC fans had never seen before – a McGregor loss.
On a blood-stained octagon floor at the MGM Grand, Diaz brutally pummelled a prone McGregor before turning the Irishman around and securing the rear-naked chokehold forcing his opponent to tap.
“He’s got the choke! HE’S GOT THE CHOKE!” came the screams from the commentators as the American celebrated the shock victory with flexed biceps.
UFC 205: Alvarez v McGregor – The countdown is on!
On the off chance that you weren’t in the mood for McGregor v Alvarez (somehow), UFC produced a one-of-a-kind promo ahead of the numbered event at Madison Square Garden – it’s enough to send shivers down the spine of any MMA fan!
Two minutes of tension build up, as McGregor gets the lifts up to New York’s most famous sporting arena and Alvarez exits a late-night diner to march through the bright lights of Times Square.
“The legends never die,” comes the final line from the chilling background song and the promo cuts revealing a sensational packed card for the November 2016 event.
McGregor breaks silence to bare his soul
After 10 months without a media interview, McGregor broke his silence with a frank, honest and at times emotional interview with Sports Center’s Ariel Helwani.
The Irishman had been out of the octagon since defeating Alvarez in November 2016 and subsequently stripped of the lightweight and featherweight titles due to inactivity during which time he’d taken part in a big-money boxing match with Floyd Mayweather.
Yet controversy reigned for The Notorious with a string of ugly incidents; from attacking a UFC bus with a metal fence, to an ugly bar fight in his native Dublin. And it wasn’t until this ESPN interview that we heard from the man himself, as he opened up on a difficult three years and signalled his intentions to return to the octagon.
Even now, it’s well worth 40 minutes of your time.
McGregor v Cowboy – The final face-off
McGregor always puts on a show at his face-offs and his final coming together with the legendary Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone ahead of UFC 246 was no different.
The Irishman produced his signature manic scream to the crowd as he flexed his muscles on the scales, shook the hand of his veteran opponent and stared into Cowboy’s eyes as the crowd went wild behind.
Things ended amicably and respectfully as the men embraced before McGregor vowed to “come for everyone in the division” and dedicated the upcoming fight to his mother.
What will he have in store for us against Poirier this time around?
Boom! McGregor makes history with stunning win over Alvarez
“History has been made!”
Perhaps the peak of McGregor’s career saw the Irishman knockout Alvarez in Madison Square Garden in a fight he completely dominated.
Leaving his defeated opponent on the ground, the Irishman marched around the ring with the Billionaire Strut and adorned the Irish flag.
The win saw McGregor claim the lightweight title and become the first man to hold belts at two different weight divisions, he also held featherweight gold, in UFC history.
UFC 189: Mendes v McGregor
The moment McGregor became a champion.
Entering UFC 189, he was expected to fight Jose Aldo for the featherweight title but the Brazilian was forced to pull out through injury.
It meant Chad “Money” Mendes stepped in and the two battled it out for the interim featherweight belt in a real clash of styles, between McGregor’s striking and his opponent’s wrestling.
In front of a raucous MGM Grand crowd in Las Vegas, heavily in support of McGregor, the then 26-year-old wore down an exhausted Mendes and finished him with a flurry of punches and kicks deep into the second round.
He’s back! Watch Conor McGregor’s return on BT Sport Box Office
Another return, another sensational promo – this time one of our own!
Big beats and flashing lights set the scene as McGregor himself announces his rematch with Dustin Poirier on BT Sport Box Office.
With clips of his infamous “I just don’t give a f***!” and the Irishman launching a metal trolley into the UFC bus, The Notorious was at peak notoriety heading into this one.
It wouldn’t go to plan though, with McGregor suffering the first TKO defeat of his career at UFC 257 in January of this year, teeing up a tantalising trilogy fight at UFC 264.
If you haven’t already, make sure you check out our promo for this one!
McGregor knocks Aldo out in 13 seconds
It was the punch that shocked millions – and maybe the most iconic moment of McGregor’s career – as he backed up his bravado to do the unthinkable against the undefeated Aldo.
Just 13 seconds into the fight for the featherweight title, McGregor stunned the Brazilian with a crisp left, instantly downing his opponent.
“Oooooohhh! He’s just slapped him!” came Joe Rogan’s roar and in the blink of an eye, McGregor had done what he set out to. He was a champion!
Full fight – Conor McGregor vs Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone
It’s time! The undisputed most-watched Conor McGregor video of all time…
It’s the short-lived fight with Cowboy Cerrone at UFC 246, as the Irishman returned to the octagon for the first time since the ugly defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov 14 months previous.
In typical McGregor fashion, the action didn’t last long. After some brief grappling and a shoulder shiver to Cerrone’s nose, McGregor landed a series of powerful punches before a stunning kick to the head downed Cowboy.
A few more McGregor blows were landed before Herb Dean called an end to proceedings in the welterweight clash sending the T-Mobile Arena wild.
The Mac was back and he needs to produce something similar once again at UFC 264!