After UFC 205 there was no denying Conor McGregor’s position as UFC’s main megastar, but with the disappointing return of former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion and megastar Ronda Rousey, McGregor’s pulling power within the UFC has only grown.
After his win at UFC 205 Conor McGregor stated that he is yet to be approached by the new owners of the UFC, WME-IMG since they purchased the company in mid 2016. He made it clear at the UFC 205 post-fight press conference that until he receives shares in the company, he would not be competing inside the Octagon.
Two people who believe this are UFC Commentator Joe Rogan and Former UFC Heavyweight Fighter Brendan Schaub. During Joe Rogan’s well known Podcast The JRE Experience, Rogan Along with Joey Diaz, Eddie Bravo and Brendan Schaub discussed the UFC 207 results and the negotiating power that “The Notorious” Conor McGregor now has after the defeat of Ronda Rousey.
At 0:58 of The JRE Experience Podcast Brendan Schaub said,
Joe Rogan Replied, “How so?”
“He’s the only star.” Schaub replied.
“Oh yeah, he gets all the stock.” Rogan said laughingly.
“He’s the only megastar,” Schaub reiterated. “And he goes, “You fellas wanna talk now or what do you want to do? Because I’m the only guy left.”
Joe Rogan went on to explain how the next UFC pay-per-view (UFC 208) featuring a main event bout between Holly Holm and Germaine de Randamie would be a “tough sell”, and that it would likely only grab the attention of hardcore MMA fans.
This is an interesting time for the UFC. Dana White has always been adamant that the UFC choses who’s a star, and that no fighter is greater than the company, but does McGregor now hold too much power?
The UFC are struggling to find main events that are PPV worthy, and with the recent UFC purchase of $4 billion by WME-IMG, it is vital that they create big events that draw in huge PPV buys to regain their huge investment.