When Conor McGregor looks into the mirror, he uses the word “invincible” to describe himself. As he stares at his own chiselled physique with two gold-plated straps draped over his shoulders, the Irishman can’t help but stand in awe of his accomplishments.
The 28-year-old is seemingly invincible in the UFC, having now successfully competed in three different weight classes over the last 12 months. During this period, McGregor posted a 3-1 record in four bouts at featherweight, welterweight and lightweight.
McGregor is second only to UFC flyweight titleholder Demetrious Johnson in the pound-for-pound rankings.
However, McGregor gave the hypothetical list the cold shoulder. The Irish champion believes that he has done enough to be recognized as the rightful king of the Octagon.
Having won seven straight fights as a featherweight, McGregor is at the top of the heap of talented fighters.
He may have lost to Nate Diaz in his welterweight debut, but McGregor made sure to erase his painful experience from memory by defeating the same guy at the same weight class last August.
Recently, McGregor etched his name into the annals of the UFC’s 23-year history by beating lightweight kingpin Eddie Alvarez. The victory earned McGregor the distinction of being the only fighter in the organization’s history to hold two different division titles simultaneously.
In just 12 months, McGregor has transformed himself into the MMA counterpart of Julius Caesar. He came, he saw and he conquered.
But just like the Roman Empire, every reign must come to an end. In the wise words of Sir Isaac Newton: “What goes up must come down.”
Here are six fighters who can truly put McGregor’s sovereignty over the UFC in great danger.
Jose “Scarface” Aldo
When McGregor fought Jose Aldo at UFC 194, it wasn’t the dog fight everyone expected it to be. The two bitter rivals ended their title clash in just 13 seconds, with McGregor emerging as a UFC superstar.
McGregor effortlessly finished the job, earning the feat of fastest championship victory in UFC history by dropping Aldo with a counter left hook before polishing him off with hammerfists on the mat.
McGregor dismissed the idea of a rematch with Aldo, deeming no point in fighting the Brazilian again after the result of the first encounter.
But Aldo has consistently lobbied for a second fight with McGregor, believing that he is the more well-rounded competitor.
Aldo, a highly-regarded striker courtesy of his elite Muay Thai background, has won 14 of his 26 professional wins by knockout. In addition, Aldo is a black belt in both Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Luta Livre.
All of these martial arts pedigrees were put to waste because McGregor was able to creep into his mind, offsetting the versatility of the Brazilian.
After his shameful defeat at the hands of McGregor, Aldo bounced back with a comprehensive showing over Frankie Edgar.
Aldo proved to the world that he still had much left to offer, capturing the interim UFC featherweight title with an iron-willed performance.
McGregor, as well as even his most avid supporters, know that bad news is waiting for him if he steps inside the Octagon with Aldo again.