Conor McGregor and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone squared off in their first face-off last night at the end of the UFC 246 press conference.
One of the most notable aspects of the evening was the way in which McGregor was able to conduct himself. The Irishman didn’t go after Cerrone on a personal level, he didn’t try and get physical, and he looked like a different man in comparison to some of his past appearances in press conferences such as these.
The moment that everyone had been waiting for, though, came in the immediate aftermath of the event being wrapped up when Dana White brought McGregor and Cerrone together for their very first face-off ahead of Saturday night’s event.
See it below (via @ufc on Instagram).
McGregor and Cerrone looked calm and confident when staring each other down before they posed together for the media and fans in attendance. They shook hands and went their separate ways, which summed up the theme for the night: respect.
“Cowboy” was clearly surprised and pleased to see how McGregor was carrying himself, but of course, with two days to go until fight night there’s still plenty of time for the Conor of old to appear.
The remaining fight week events include media day tomorrow, which both men are set to take part in, as well as the weigh-ins on Friday.
It’ll be fascinating to see how things go down in Las Vegas, and how it winds up impacting the legacy of UFC 246 in the years to come. This could easily mark the end of Conor McGregor as a top tier star, but on the opposite end of the spectrum, it could also be the moment where he announced his return in the most spectacular fashion imaginable.
For now, fans can just be happy that the press conference was much more civilized than anyone could’ve imagined.
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 1/16/2020.