The Notorious McG: Conor McGregor Inside and Outside Ultimate Fighting
On Saturday two UFC legends collide on ESPN+ as Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone faces Irishman Conor McGregor, perhaps the most notorious fighter in mixed martial arts. ESPN Senior Writer Kevin Van Valkenburg visited Ireland to see how years of controversy, troubling behavior, and criminal allegations have affected McGregor's folk hero status at home.
McGregor vs. Cerrone Press Conference Reaction With Chael Sonnen, Fan Calls
Following Wednesday night's UFC 246 press conference featuring Conor McGregor, Cowboy Cerrone and Dana White, Ariel hits the ESPN Radio airwaves to take fan calls and to speak with Chael Sonnen (12:48) about his takeaways from the night. Plus, "TST's Minimalist Tip of the Week" with some help from McGregor (39:17).
Conor McGregor Exclusive Interview, Kavanagh, Roddy, Cruz, Alvarez, More
With all eyes on Conor McGregor and his UFC 246 battle with Cowboy Cerrone in Las Vegas, Ariel opens the show by explaining why he's so excited about this card. The show's first guest, UFC bantamweight Dominick Cruz talks about a conversation he shared with McGregor and the advice he has for him in facing off against Cerrone (23:39). Then, former UFC lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez tells Ariel about his plan to fight three times this year, which he hopes will ultimately land him a ONE Championship title fight (39:29). After that, UFC lightweight Anthony Pettis previews his Saturday matchup against Carlos Diego Ferreira before explaining how he's fallen back in love with "the process" of fighting during this camp (49:57). Plus, he tells a wild story about USADA. Then, in an exclusive interview, the man they call "Notorious" sits down with Ariel to discuss his newfound outlook on life, his confidence heading into this fight, the camaraderie he shares with his team, the role of his two children in his life, how he's managed to block out all of the criticism he's received, why he's chosen to fight Cerrone at 170 lbs., his questionable decision-making before the Khabib Nurmagomedov bout and how he hopes to rectify it by fighting him again, his relationship with life guru Tony Robbins, how much money he'll make off the Cerrone fight and much more (1:05:28). After that, 15 different celebrities weigh in with their UFC 246 picks, with predictions coming from the NBA's Kristaps Porzingis, WWE's Becky Lynch, actor Mario Lopez and many more (1:58:45). Owen Roddy, McGregor's striking coach, then discusses the holes in Cerrone's game and McGregor's readiness for the fight (2:05:58). Next, UFC flyweight Roxanne Modafferi, who fights Maycee Barber this weekend, talks about her social media exchanges with Barber and how she envisions Saturday night will unfold (2:24:34). Lastly, SBG Ireland's John Kavanagh makes his return to the show to candidly discuss how McGregor got his motivation back, why the Irishman needs to fight to stay grounded and out of trouble, if he thinks McGregor could fight Justin Gaethje next, and the last time he remembers seeing McGregor this focused and happy (2:35:32).
2020 Lookahead with NewYorkRic
Ariel and NewYorkRic begin their 2020 preview by looking back on the fallout of Ariel's controversial picks from the 2019 Helwani Nose Awards. Then, the two old friends discuss the fights that must happen in 2020 (15:17), bold predictions (27:37), the biggest stories they're watching (39:06) and who they expect to win the male and female fighters of the year (51:24). Plus, TST's own predictions and his "Minimalist Tip of the Week," which takes on a New Year's spin (1:06:29).
The 2019 Helwani Nose Awards feat. Masvidal, Adesanya, 24 Awards, More
In an annual tradition, Ariel announces his winners of the most coveted awards in MMA. Male (1:51:44) and Female (1:09:01) Fighter of the Year are on the line, as well as Breakout Fighter (24:02), Most Improved Fighter and Promo of the Year (1:13:42). Chael Sonnen also joins Ariel to hand out all-decade awards (47:26) and Ben Askren (1:15:08), Jorge Masvidal (1:59:34), Israel Adesanya (2:22:20) and NewYorkRic (2:39:28) react to Ariel's selections.