“I enjoy listening to the reasons why I am here. The excuses of [critics]. There are many, many times they look to discredit me, what I have achieved in my career, in this company. Right now, I feel I have the right opponent. The pound-for-pound number one. Undefeated 10 years. The only featherweight champion. What can they say now? What can they say after Jose falls? So I look forward to proving my point and what I’ve been saying over these years… He is currently the pound-for-pound number one fighter on the roster. So, I have been telling people that I am the current pound-for-pound number one fighter on the planet. The pound-for-pound number one is on the line in in this fight. I am a man with a point to prove and I will go out and I will prove it.”
-During a pre-UFC 194 media event on Wednesday, Conor McGregor said he’ll prove critics wrong and leave them with nothing more to say after his fight with Jose Aldo (transcribed by MMAFighting.com).
Penick’s Analysis: This is the fight where the Conor McGregor mythos becomes reality, or where he gets put in his place. Those are the two outcomes possible on Saturday night. McGregor obviously believes he’s the end all be all at featherweight right now, and if he beats the man who has held full control over this division for the last six years as champion, he’s going to prove everything that he’s said is correct. That’s an absolutely major piece of what this fight represents. McGregor is on the cusp of becoming one of the biggest stars this sport has seen, because if he backs up the bombastic out of the cage antics with his best career performance and beats one of the best pound for pound fighters in the world, he’s going to look unstoppable. That’s still lofty and not necessarily likely to happen, but if it does, there’s nothing left to say against him as the man in this division.