Dana White Explains Conor McGregor’s UFC Struggles: ‘Money Changes Everything’

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They say money can’t buy happiness. Apparently for Conor McGregor, it can’t buy motivation either.

Appearing on Piers Morgan Uncensored this week, longtime UFC boss Dana White discussed McGregor’s possible return to the octagon. And he explained his lack of success in the sport in recent years.

“Here’s what happens, Piers, and you know this. I’m sure you’ve seen this with colleagues and friends and people that you know,” White said.

“Once a certain level of money is attained, to be the person that you were coming up, to be that hungry and work that hard and be that dedicated to the sport, or whatever craft it is you do, money changes everything. Conor McGregor has made that kind of money. It’s not a knock. It’s just a fact.”

Once the Featherweight and Lightweight Champion, McGregor has fought only four times since 2016 — losing three of those matches. And in 2021, he fractured his leg in the first round in a loss to Dustin Poirier. That, in itself, was a huge setback as well.

Dana White Elaborates On Claim That Money Changed Conor McGregor

“When we sold the company in 2016, this was sort of a Microsoft of fighting,” White said.

“There were a lot of people that made a lot of money, and a lot of people left and they went and retired, or moved on. You have to have a certain type of drive to make that kind of money, and you’ve seen guys in this sport when they make that kind of money, they’ll fight a lot less like Conor has, or they go on losing streaks because you are not that same person once you get that kind of money.”

Not only is McGregor — arguably — UFC’s biggest star, but he’s also a businessman outside of the octagon. In 2018, he launched his Proper 12 whiskey, and three years later, he sold his majority stake for $600 million.

McGregor’s other ventures include a line of sports recovery products called Tidl and sponsorships with Beetroot Lab, DraftKings and Rolls-Royce. His net worth continues to rise, and the 35-year-old says he’s “closing in on a billion.”

As far as his fighting career, though, White says we can expect to see McGregor competing again in the UFC in 2024.

“He is back in the gym. He’s training,” White said. “I expect to see Conor fighting next year.”

Hopefully, he has enough money saved up to last him until then.

Written by Amber Harding

Amber is a Midwestern transplant living in Murfreesboro, TN. She spends most of her time taking pictures of her dog, explaining why real-life situations are exactly like "this one time on South Park," and being disappointed by the Tennessee Volunteers.

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