Return and Revival of the “Notorious”
After the devastating loss with Khabib Nurmagomed on October 6, 2018, Connor McGregor made a solid comeback by defeating Donald Cerrone at UFC 246, on 18 January 2020.
The fight which was widely anticipated and most people doubted that McGregor would be able to manage a victory. But he proved everyone wrong. It just took him 40 seconds in the first round to defeat his opponent via technical knockout.
It was very hard to imagine that the scenario would have developed in such a way, but considering McGregor’s fighting technique and his ability to slowly improve his advantage, had its consequences. The win gave him an award known as a Performance of the Night.
McGregor became the first-ever UFC player to have technical knockouts in his repertoire in three different divisions, which are featherweight, lightweight and welterweight, the feat, extremely hard to accomplish in a career. Now he holds 22 wins(19 of them are by knockout) and 4 losses.
Although he was favourite by betting odds, it was unclear whether he could make a successful comeback for almost one-year hiatus.
Impact on the streaming media
However the win was not only notable for the spectacular victory, Conor McGregor pulled off, but also the massive impact he made on subscribers. The fight became the most streamed live event in history hitting million streaming buys, therefore surpassing Logan Paul vs KSI boxing match. It was such commercial success that even Robert “Bob” Iger CEO of Disney underlined his influence on the MMA world.
Bob Iger while holding a conference on February 4, 2020, declared that the number of subscribers on ESPN+ soared enormously from 6.6 to 7.6 million.
The upsurge was mainly caused by two factors: first of all the new package which costs $12.99, contains ESPN+, Disney+ and Hulu and the 500,000 new subscribers to ESPN+ which the fight brought forward. Approximately 500,000 of these subscribers who had ordered the fight already made up ESPN+ subscribers. The deal and bundle between Disney+ and ESPN+ was also a key factor of subscribers’ rising number.
Based on statistics fight between McGregor and Cerrone produced roughly $70 million in terms of streaming revenue only, not to mention $11 million at the T-Mobile in Las Vegas.
Based on the Google searches and huge anticipation of McGregor vs Nurmagomedov match, it was unclear whether any future fight would eclipse it. Albeit it lost the title of largest-pay-per-view event.
McGregor – a prominent figure of MMA
Now it is not so difficult to comprehend why Conor McGregor enjoys such a huge popularity in MMA and worldwide – he always puts on a show, he always attracts the people no matter if he is in form or not. His eccentric character, unconventional and arrogant nature is always a matter of debate among the people. Thus promoters always try to facilitate the organization of events, where McGregor is a part of it.
McGregor is notably known for his match against Floyd Mayweather as well. Talking about his characteristics, one should not forget that he is always striving for further challenges. Despite the fact that he lost this fight in 2017, McGregor gained more admiration worldwide. It is not so common when MMA fighters decide to try their prowess against boxing opponents. We are talking here about someone like the calibre of Mayweather who has not lost a single match throughout his career.
Providing that, McGregor is not only a simple UFC fighter but a great influencer as well who promotes the operation UFC and brings more viewers to the organization.
What is the future for Mcgregor?
According to McGregor, he is not just going to sit and do nothing. The Irishman looks for more opportunities and promises to create a spectacle for people. Most notably he proposed the ideas of fighting against Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather.
But his desired fight would be the rematch against the Russian Khabib Nurmagomedov, with whom he lost without a chance 15 months ago. It provides a possibility for him to avenge the defeat, but this would not be simple considering the fact that Nurmagomedov is undefeatable in his career.