UFC 246: Conor McGregor Must Fight Sway His Sins In The City That Generates Them
By James Lee
As Conor McGregor enters the octagon on Saturday night, the whole combat world will be fractured, but observing.
More importantly, as all the hype may succumb the talk of fight week, the urgency for McGregor to personally wipe away his sins in Sin City is beyond everything.
In turn, there are two major sins to wipe away. Haunting memories of Las Vegas of late, but most importantly, the chance of apology in the best way he knows how: fighting.
Albeit maybe empty, his antics of late seemingly reveal he is apologetic for his actions and has surrendered to an inner requisite change.
Ultimately, the only way he can truly apologise is by publically competing. As sad is it may be, as long as an athlete competes and provides entertainment, not much else outside of the sport matters.
The UFC was founded on the best fighting the best. Conor McGregor is one of the best and when he makes that strut around the octagon this Saturday, the whole fighting world will once again be in awe.
Everything will be forgotten for that period in the octagon and consistency afterwards will ensure he is given another chance. Oddly, a win will see his likeability rise to where it once was, as well as true humility in accepting the past.
All can still remember that night in Dublin that was his inception of stardom and following performances over Dustin Poirier and Chad Mendes escalated that.
The 13-second knockout of Jose Aldo culminated the magic and pondered the question about his mortality in the sport. He established a sense of mystique like never before. Almost untouchable. As many thought, he had conquered those at the top in every style.
Even in the second Nate Diaz fight, he showed a different side to his game in that he could stick to a game plan and showed heart that he didn’t need to prior.
Almost every time we see him inside the octagon he changes his style. Although all centre on his left hand being most prominent, the difference is instrumental. His early UFC times saw him act in almost a Bruce Lee loose style to a change to a powerful counter striker. What style shows up against Cerrone is another mystery.
Regardless of his style, one thing he built his success on was being self aware. Perhaps he lost that in the past two years, but it is seemingly back. Most notably, he has always abided by the statement that ‘insecurities create wisdom’ and a return to that is necessary.
The fan feeling towards him will make him feel insecure and hopefully for himself and the sport, he welcomes that notion to return to what made many adore him.
His mistakes have been somewhat inexcusable. When many of his biggest supporters could no longer prop him up, he needed to change. He has acknowledged the change and god willing he means it.
McGregor was once the one who promised he was different. Promised that he foresaw himself in the position he finds himself in now and wouldn’t change. Unfortunately, he has or did. Things seem exponentially different to when they did before his last fight. Maybe he has changed and being inside the octagon may act as the vice he requires.
In terms of training, the past few fights he has seemed distant from those closest. The McGregor who closed himself away to prepare for Nate Diaz is necessary. Tucked away with little to do than to think and train.
The ego is the biggest detriment to somebody moving forward and hopefully that is being released. Only time will tell, but Las Vegas unlatches the door to his future.
In a sense, he must win. Now only for his fighting legacy, but for his own personal sanity. Sin City could wipe away the sins or keep them deep inside; difficult to ever remove.