Mar 4, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Conor McGregor during weigh-ins for UFC 196 fight against Nate Diaz (not pictured) at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: USATSI-266164 ORIG FILE ID: 20160304_mjr_su5_017.JPG

Conor McGregor Breaks His Silence Over Altercation at Bellator 187 in Ireland

Conor McGregor issued an apology and explained what unfolded last week

On Tuesday, UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor issued a formal apology for his behavior at Bellator 187 this past weekend while also explaining his side of what unfolded.

The incident occurred at the end of a fight between McGregor’s longtime teammate Charlie Ward and his opponent John Redmond.

Ward appeared to knock out Redmond with one second remaining in the opening round and McGregor leapt into the cage to apparently celebrate with his teammate. Referee Marc Goddard then tried to eject McGregor from the cage as he hadn’t actually called a stop to the contest yet and that sent the UFC fighter into a rage.

McGregor charged at Goddard in anger before he was finally removed. McGregor then attempted to climb back onto the cage again when another official tried to stop him and that’s when the Irishman took a swipe at him before jumping down again.

McGregor broke his silence on the incident with a statement on Tuesday where he explained his position for jumping into the cage while also apologizing for his behavior.

“I sincerely apologize for my behavior at last weekends fight event in Dublin,” McGregor wrote. “While trying to support a loyal teammate and friend, I let my emotions get the best of me and acted out of line. As a multiple weight UFC champion, executive producer, role model and public figure, I must hold myself to a higher standard.

“The referee Marc [Goddard] was making a horrendous decision in trying to pick an unconscious fighter up off the floor and force the fight to continue into the second round. Even against the wishes of the said fighters coach. The fight was over. After witnessing my fighter [Charlie Ward] in a fight where the worst happened and the opponent passed away from his injuries on the night, I thought the worst was about to happen again, and I lost it and over reacted. I am sorry to everyone.”

I sincerely apologize for my behavior at last weekends fight event in Dublin. While trying to support a loyal teammate and friend, I let my emotions get the best of me and acted out of line. As a multiple weight UFC champion, executive producer, role model and public figure, I must hold myself to a higher standard. The referee Marc Godard was making a horrendous decision in trying to pick an unconscious fighter up off the floor and force the fight to continue into the second round. Even against the wishes of the said fighters coach. The fight was over. After witnessing my fighter in a fight where the worst happened and the opponent passed away from his injuries on the night, I thought the worst was about to happen again, and I lost it and over reacted. I am sorry to everyone. I sincerely apologize to the Director of the Mohegan Tribe Department of Athletic Regulation, Mike Mazzulli, all the officials and staff working the event, Andy Ryan and his fighter John, two stonch ones that put up a great fight every time. That side will always have my respect, and lastly every one of my fans. I love yous all! I’ve always learned from my mistakes and this will be no different.

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McGregor referenced the 2016 fight where Ward knocked out Portuguese fighter Joao Carvalho,, who later died from the injuries sustained in the bout. McGregor has spoken numerous times about how the incident affected him personally and this was Ward’s first knockout since that fight more than a year ago.

Still, McGregor’s explanation doesn’t excuse his behavior considering he wasn’t a licensed corner man for the fight and for all intents and purposes he was essentially a spectator watching the event who then jumped into the cage at the end of the fight.

Ultimately, McGregor says he’s sorry to everyone involved, including Redmond and his team as well as the governing body overseeing the event in Ireland this past weekend.

“I sincerely apologize to the Director of the Mohegan Tribe Department of Athletic Regulation, Mike Mazzulli, all the officials and staff working the event, Andy Ryan and his fighter John, two stonch ones that put up a great fight every time. That side will always have my respect, and lastly every one of my fans. I love yous all!” McGregor wrote.

“I’ve always learned from my mistakes and this will be no different.”

Because McGregor wasn’t licensed in any way for the event, it’s not really possible for him to face any sanctioning from the commission handling the Bellator event. Instead, McGregor could face questions the next time he seeks a fighter license for his next bout but there’s no rule that says he has to be punished for this incident.

Mazzulli claimed that the UFC pulled McGregor from a fight on Dec. 30 as a result of the altercation. Unfortunately sources have said that McGregor wasn’t actually scheduled to appear on the UFC 219 card anyways but it appears for now the situation has been handled and no further punishment will be dished out.

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