the UFC is really hyping up the fight between conor mcgregor and jose aldo at UFC 189 in july. i’m just as excited as the next bonehead to see it but i keep coming back to one question: does mcgregor actually deserve a title shot? because as much as i want to see this fight, i don’t think he does.
there’s no doubt that mcgregor is a talented fighter and a first class publicity machine but so far he has faced only one top ten featherweight fighter, dustin poirer, who was then ranked #5. then in a subsequent match that makes zero apparent sense, mcgregor fought dennis siver. dennis who? i know, that’s what i thought.
siver had a 22-9 MMA record, and none of those wins were against anyone good. all of his UFC losses were to top 10 dudes so it was clear he couldn’t hang with the big boys. on top of that, he had a recent loss and a unanimous decision win over some nobody, which was changed to a ‘no contest’ when test results revealed siver had been using steroids. that’s pathetic. so siver should have been fighting other nobodies, not title contenders, but he was then inexplicably given a match with the hottest rising star of the UFC, ‘the notorious one.’ that’s fishy.
but here’s why i think it happened that way. sure, the UFC saw that mcgregor has some solid skills, but more importantly, they realized they could capitalize on his popularity and sell a lot of tickets and pay per view with him in a title fight so they decided that mcgregor must get a title shot while he’s a shit hot commodity. he certainly hadn’t earned a title shot just by beating the #5 guy but rather than pit him against a top 3 opponent like chad mendes or frankie edgar and jeopardize the hype momentum, the UFC threw mcgregor the sacrificial siver. this virtually guaranteed him another easy win, allowing the UFC to say, “he’s undefeated in our organization and has done it easily, he deserves a title shot” — never mind that four of his five UFC fights were against virtual nobodies. so mcgregor was granted safe passage to continue his rise to title contention (and many UFC ticket and PPV sales) without the potential of any pesky losses interfering with the plan. i honestly can’t see any other reasonable explanation for this chain of events, and i don’t like it. i think it seriously tarnishes the UFC’s credibility.
on top of that, i hate listening to mcgregor talk. his personality is so transparently over-the-top that it takes a fucking clown to think he means all of his crazy talk. i mean, throwing darts at a picture of aldo, ripping the picture apart afterwards, stuffing it in his mouth…it’s god damn ridiculous. just look at pics of him actually fighting, like the pic above, and you’ll notice how perfectly composed he is, even when throwing combinations and whatnot. the guy is very focused and in control, even in the heat of high level physical combat, so it’s just plain stupid to believe that the same man really is the loud-mouthed idiot he likes to portray in the media. but he knows the idiot act sells to all the fucking UFC fanboy goofs who can’t see through the phony bullshit, and he knows it gets his opponents riled up, so he does it. good for mcgregor, it’s a great business plan. i just can’t stand him while he’s doing it.
but shit, i love watching him fight, and can’t wait to see him try to back up all the bravado when he takes on aldo. not only will aldo be the first true test of mcgregor’s career — since the UFC has managed to curtail any other such tests — he will be one of the toughest tests mcgregor could ever ask for. it would certainly be an exciting game changer if mcgregor were to become the new featherweight champion but i would rather see aldo knock mcgregor down with those leg kicks. there could be no smart-ass quip as a response, just some serious tail-tucking, so it would be very satisfying.