Irish MMA icon Conor McGregor has come a long way from his days as a scrawny kid who often found himself on the wrong end of a beatdown by older guys in his neighborhood.
In an interview with ESPN’s Highly Questionable, McGregor revealed that his initial encounters with trouble were often linked to his pursuit of love. As a young and ambitious individual, McGregor found himself attracted to a girl who was a few years older than him. However, her boyfriend and his group of friends were not pleased with McGregor’s advances.
He said: “Usually it’s to do with women, as I’m sure you know. Growing up as a young kid I was the younger kid and I was going after this girl. She was maybe 15, 16 years of age. Her boyfriend was like 17 or 18. Him and his little crew were driving cars and everything and I was only a young kid, but I sneaked my way in there.”
One night while walking with the girl, McGregor’s worst fears materialized as a car suddenly pulled up in front of them. Several guys belonging to the girl’s boyfriend’s crew emerged from the vehicle and attacked McGregor without any provocation.
At that moment, young McGregor realized he needed to learn how to defend himself to prevent such incidents from occurring again.
He continued: “I was with with the girl and we were walking up the street one night and the car pulled up in front of me and a big load of them jumped out and whooped my ass. I curled up in a ball and took my beating. I’d done nothing.”
After enduring the unjust beating, McGregor made a firm decision to acquire the skills necessary to protect himself in any situation. He said: “For me, after that moment I thought to myself, ‘I’m going to really learn how to fight so if anyone ever jumps out of a car or jumps out in any situation they will never do it again.'”
When asked about the number of untrained men he could handle in a confrontational situation, McGregor stated that he could easily handle ESPN hosts Dan Le Batard and Bomani Jones. McGregor also said that he could defeat each of them with just a single strike.
McGregor stated: “I would clean four out pretty easily. Each one would take one shot. It depends. If you two came running at me I would eliminate you in less than 45 seconds.”