On January 18th, at UFC 246, Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone is slated to welcome the ‘Notorious’ Conor McGregor back to the Octagon. It’s the biggest fight of Cerrone’s long and storied career.
The welterweight contest with McGregor will likely earn Cerrone the biggest payday of his 13 year tenure in professional fighting. For McGregor, who hasn’t fought since October 2018 — in a lopsided loss to Khabib Nurmagomodev — the fight is viewed as an opportunity to wrestle back some relevance inside of the eight-sided cage.
McGregor hasn’t won a single combat sports bout since November 2016, when he won the UFC lightweight belt from Eddie Alvarez. Since then he’s lost to Floyd Mayweather Jr., in a boxing spectacle, and been dogged by legal issues. This November he plead guilty to assaulting an older gentleman in a pub in Dublin, over a disagreement involving his Proper 12 Whiskey.
During his time away from fighting, the New York Times reported that McGregor has also been investigated over two separate accusations of sexual assault.
MMA Fighting spoke with Cerrone about McGregor and what the Irishman’s future may contain. In that conversation Cerrone said he’s been labeled a ‘speed bump’ between McGregor and a rematch with Nurmagomedov. The American also talked about rumours he’s heard about him throwing the fight — for a massive UFC payday — to ensure McGregor will get that rematch.
In the article Cerrone doesn’t state where any of these rumours have come from. What he does do is refute the premise that he’d ever take a dive.
“Hell no, I’m not bowing down. There’s a bunch of sh*t going around, people keep telling me ‘I heard you’re getting paid to take a dive.’ There wouldn’t be enough money in the world for someone to pay me to take a dive. I could never look myself in the mirror if somebody paid me to take a dive. Shit, never happen.”
Cerrone added that he’d rather fight for free than take money to lose.