Conor McGregor stole the show at Bellator 187 Friday night in Dublin. The UFC champ, who was in the house to cheer on his SBG Ireland teammate Charlie Ward, jumped in the cage after the middleweight knocked out John Redmond. But it's what followed that has McGregor facing potential punishment.
Referee Marc Goddard approached McGregor after he mauled Ward to celebrate and the UFC champ pushed the ref away. Then McGregor grew angrier, attempting to chase Goddard down as security guards held him back. He eventually got to Goddard and shoved him again in what the body regulating the fight called an "assault."
In a now-deleted tweet, McGregor attempted to explain why he went after Goddard.
That's the same explanation that McGregor offered outside the arena Friday night. “He was still trying to say, ‘keep going,’ and it’s that same referee who I lost me head with. I said, ‘It’s you, you rat.’ He nearly fucking crapped his jocks.”
The previous incident McGregor is referencing went down at UFC Gdansk in October. In attendance to support another teammate, McGregor was reprimanded by Goddard in the middle of the featherweight fight between Artem Lobov and Andre Fili.
Lobov is McGregor's teammate and the lightweight champ was walking around ring side shouting instructions to the Russian. Goddard chided McGregor from inside the cage and told him to return to his seat.
“Conor was basically acting like a fourth cornerman,” Goddard said after the fight. “Walking around the cage side wherever and whenever he wanted. When Fili took down Artem, Conor was right there. That’s simply not fair and not allowed. I won’t have it. He can’t do as he pleases.”
McGregor escaped that incident without any punishment but he may not be so lucky this time. Mike Mazzulli, the president of the Association of Boxing Commissions and Combative Sports (ABC), called out McGregor after the fight and said that UFC has been contacted about a potential punishment.
It's unclear what the sanctions for McGregor might be. Mazzulli told MMAFighting.com that the punishment would have to come from the commission that licenses like the Irishman. The UFC could also punish McGregor, but so far promotion president Dana White hasn't said anything about his biggest star's big screw-up.