By Nick Catlin
Last Saturday at UFC 246, Conor McGregor defeated Donald Cerrone in forty seconds. This put McGregor right back into the mix for title contention, at both lightweight and welterweight. But what did a victory against Cerrone do for McGregor in reality?
In the less-than-a-minute bout, McGregor pulled off strikes that have never before been seen. These not only changed the course of his fight, but could change the clinching game in the sport entirely. The shoulder strikes he landed broke the nose of Cerrone, which then led to the TKO stoppage early in the first round. Never before have we seen a move such as this, and to see it executed as greatly and effortless as it was in this fight, there is optimism that it could be used as another realistic strike for fighters to use in the future.
With this victory, McGregor showed that he was back to his winning days. His last victory was Nov. 12, 2016, after he dethroned Eddie Alvarez and became the first double champ in UFC history. If he had lost against Cerrone, McGregor would have lost his last three bouts, including the boxing match against Floyd Mayweather and the spark he originally gained would have been destroyed entirely.
A victory against Cerrone is yet another huge feat for McGregor on his already unbelievable run in the UFC. The amount of records he has broken is too long to list and to defeat the UFC leader in wins is another accomplishment you can add to his legacy when all is said and done.
McGregor also became the first UFC fighter to acquire a knockout at featherweight, lightweight and welterweight. This one shows that he still transfers that power at the welterweight division, which was a big question mark due to his two fights against Nate Diaz in which he lost the first one by second-round submission and won via majority decision in the second bout.
After the fight ended, McGregor absorbed no significant strikes against Cerrone and made his 2020 campaign even more likely as he stated he wanted to fight three times over the calendar year. No one truly knows what is next for him in the octagon, but signs point toward a bright rest of the year for both McGregor and the UFC.
Edited by Emma Moloney | firstname.lastname@example.org