Dubai: When current lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov was slated to face former UFC champion Conor McGregor, it was expected to be a heated affair. What no one expected was pandemonium.
In the build up to the fight, McGregor was seen insulting Nurmagomedov’s family and beliefs and attacking the bus carrying him along with other UFC fighters and staff. Nurmagomedov remained surprisingly composed throughout these attacks. However, he lost all composure at the end of the fight last night, after McGregor tapped out in the fourth round.
Soon after the win, Nurmagomedov jumped over the octagon to hit one of McGregor’s team mates while McGregor scrapped with the other team.
Really good angle of Khabib/McGregor UFC 229 post-fight stuff pic.twitter.com/ac1XKP4MNT— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) October 7, 2018
Tweeps shared clips from the brawl, making the fight one of the top worldwide trends on Twitter.
Things were so crazy that even Mike Tyson weighed in. He tweeted: “Watching the @TheNotoriousMMA [Conor McGregor] vs @TeamKhabib fight. Unimaginable never thought it would go down like this. Crazier than my fight riot.” He was referring to the 1997 fight where he bit off Evander Holyfield’s ear and was disqualified, leading to chaos in the crowd.
Tweeps were quick to pick teams, with many saying Conor McGregor had a history of aggressive behaviour.
@OzKaterji tweeted: “A pro athlete was attacked on a bus and wasn’t able to defend himself. The aggressor faced no real punishment. He was then scheduled to fight this aggressor, and had to endure racist abuse from him for months leading up to the fight. That ANY of that was allowed is a disgrace.”
A pro athlete was attacked on a bus & wasn't able to defend himself. The aggressor faced no real punishment. He was then scheduled to fight this aggressor, and had to endure racist abuse from him for months leading up to the fight. That ANY of that was allowed is a disgrace.— Oz Katerji (@OzKaterji) October 7, 2018
Others commented on how the UFC [Ultimate Fighting Championship] used the bus attack in marketing the fight.
@VicTafur wrote: “I mean, come on, UFC can’t have it both ways. They used the bus attack as part of the promotion. He shouldn’t have done it, but I can see why Khabib jumped the fence after all that was said. He wanted to beat them all. (And he destroyed Conor).”
Other Twitter users were clearly on McGregor’s side of the ring, criticising Nurmagomedov for starting the brawl.
However, many simply decided to get creative with their analysis of the sequence of events.
A popular video doing the rounds showed Nurmagomedov’s face superimposed on The Hulk, with McGregor being beaten around in a scene taken from The Avengers.
@RealEstateSA_PK shared the clip, writing: “Summary of the McGregor vs Khabib fight #UFC229.”
Others couldn’t help but take a dig at singer Drake, who was at the bout supporting McGregor.
LOOOOOOL SOMEONE SAID THIS WAS DRAKE WHEN KHABIB JUMPED THE CAGE pic.twitter.com/XodBzFddjk— KingMani🎨 (@ffsManiJ) October 7, 2018
Drake was acting like a hard man Trying to go after Khabib men This was pure comedy loooooooool pic.twitter.com/dFC63RI2aI— Kwaku Boamah🇬🇭🇬🇧 (@manlike_jnr) October 7, 2018
Twitter user AyazH_X noted Drake’s consistent support for the losing side at various sporting events, writing: “Leave him at home next time …”
Leave him at home next time ... pic.twitter.com/qcHU1eNEsV— Ayaz Hussain (@AyazH_X) October 7, 2018
While Nurmagomedov apologised for his behaviour in a post-match press conference, McGregor seemed to be hopeful that it would disqualify him.
He tweeted: “Good knock. Looking forward to the rematch.”