Today marks the four-year anniversary of Conor McGregor's UFC debut against Marcus Brimmage, and few things could better sum up his rise to the top of the sport by comparing hist first ever UFC entrance to his most recent.
On April 6th, 2013, Conor McGregor walked to the UFC octagon for the first time at the Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden. The official attendance for the event was roughly 14,500, but as his fight was in the middle of the prelims there was a fraction of that number present.
On November 12, 2016, McGregor made the walk in front of over 20,000 fans at Madison Square Garden as the main event and centre of attenion.
For his debut, the event was broadcast on FUEL TV but due to Conor's place on the fight-card, his entrace was not. Having popped up on r/MMA we can get a look at what was previously unseen for the vast majority, and it does a decent job of charting his progress since that day.
Interestingly, he opted for a track from the 'ALI' movie soundtrack at the time.
For his fight in New York, McGregor mixed up his usual Sinead O'Connor/Biggie hybrid and spliced in 50 Cent's 'I Get Money' which features the line "I run New York"...
The difference in the scale of the occasion is remarkable, and a true sign of where he started from in his UFC career, but as for McGregor himself, he looks the same as he did for any other fight, minus the tattoos.
This was back when McGregor's $60,000 KO of the night bonus was life-changing, and one need only look at his Instagram account to see how far detached from that lifestyle he is.
It's been a crazy journey that promises to get even crazier.