It would be fair to say that 2019 was a challenging year for Conor McGregor.
Fresh off a devastating defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov by way of submission in October of 2018, the Crumlin-born fighter made headlines more for his actions outside of the octagon than any exploits in it.
Despite successfully launching his own brand of Irish whisky - Proper Twelve - Conor has had a tumultuous year that culminated in allegations of assault after a video appeared to show him striking a man in an Irish pub.Conor McGregor was mocked recently for appearing this bizarre Russian advert:
In an interview with ESPN's Ariel Helwani in the wake of the incident, the Irish fighter was contrite, stating;
"In reality, it doesn't matter what happened there. I was in the wrong. That man deserved to enjoy his time in the pub without having it to end the way it did. And although it was five months ago, I tried to make amends, and I made amends back then. But that does not even matter. I was in the wrong. I must come here before you and take accountability and take responsibility. I owe it to the people that have been supporting me. I owe it to my mother, my father, my family. I owe it to the people who trained me in martial arts."CCTV footage shows Conor McGregor smashing a fan's phone:
He also spoke out on his future in the UFC, saying at the the time that he was game to fight anyone. Back then, it seemed most likely that he would face Justin Gaethje, but we now know that Conor will be making his UFC return at welterweight against Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone.
This marks Conor's return to the 170lb weight limit - the same weight at which he fought out two monumental scraps with Nate Diaz - and it's fair to say that the Irishman is looking absolutely ripped as he makes his final preparations for the comeback.
Conor will make his return to UFC action on January 18 against Donald Cerrone as the main event at UFC 246.