MMA

Ireland's UFC Fighters: Where Are They Now?

Ireland's UFC Fighters: Where Are They Now?

Conor McGregor fights this evening on a Fight Island in the Middle East, and for non-hardcore fans of the sport, the fight has generated as much interest as a Pro14 match during the Six Nations or a preseason GAA fixture.

The heady days of McGregormania feel like a fever dream for most of us. But those MMA conversations on the Marian Finucane show did happen. The Irish public moved on from MMA after one too many McGregor's GUBUs, to the delight of the people who love the sport and hated the sideshow.

We thought we'd look back on the careers of the stable of Irish fighters who were signed to the UFC as McGregor became global phenomenon, and what they've been up to since.

Aisling 'The Bash' Daly

The first and only Irish woman signed to the UFC, Daly made memorable ringwalk (and victory) at the UFC Dublin event in 2015.

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She retired from fighting in 2017 after an abnormality was spotted on her brain during a scan. According to her Instagram profile, Daly is training to be a primary school teacher.

Cathal Pendred

The Belvedere college alumnus reached the semifinal of the nineteenth season of the Ultimate Fighter in 2014 and had a two-year run in the UFC in 2014 and 2015. He is best remembered by non-MMA fans as the hero who saved a baby dolphin at a Clare beach back in 2014.

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Pendred has since embarked on an acting career, and appeared in programmes like Magnum PI and Lore, as well as the 2019 crime film The Corrupted.

Neil 'Two Tap' Seery

'Two Tap' was one of the true hardmen of Irish MMA, a fighter's fighter.

The Finglas native was famously back to work the morning after his big win over Phil Harris at UFC Dublin in 2014 and the glitz and glamour of the UFC didn't seem to change him one iota.

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He retired from fighting in 2017 after losing to Alexandre Pantoje. Seery teaches BJJ at the Team Ryano gym in Finglas. Based on his social media profile, Seery seems enjoy fishing and family life.

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Paddy Holohan

The Hooligan retired from the UFC in 2016 with a record of 12-2-1.

Holohan ran for the South Dublin County Council in the 2019 local elections for Sínn Fein, and was elected. In 2019, he published an autobiography called Hooligan.

Holahan was suspended from Sínn Fein one year ago for comments made on a podcast, where he said he wanted a 'family man' to be Irish Taoiseach instead of Leo Varadkar, who was 'of Indian blood' while noting 'there is some f****** scum women out there'.

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Holohan was reinstated by Sínn Fein later in the year and he was unsuccessful in his bid to be elected mayor of South Dublin County Council.  Following that failed bid, Sínn Fein decided to 'suspend all party structures and party activity' in the Dublin South West constituency.

John Kavanagh

The proprietor of Straight Blast Gym and the first Irishman to receive a black belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu remains Conor McGregor's trainer all these years later.

Kavanagh continues to train fighters at SBG and will be in McGregor's corner for the Poirier fight.

Paul 'Redzer' Redmond

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Paul Redmond has been fighting since 2008 and was signed to the UFC back in 2015, where he fought two times before being released. Redmond now fights for Bellator. He's a house DJ and remains the Irish MMA fighter with the best musical taste.

Ido Portal

The Israeli attained internet notoriety as McGregor's movement coach back in 2015, introducing the pool noodle to McGregor's training regime.

Five years later, Portal remains one of the world's most famous movement coaches. He was the subject of the 2017 documentary 'Just Move'.

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Conor McGregor

This week it was reported that the 32-year-old Crumlin native is being sued by a Dublin woman and her mother for an alleged assault as well as an alleged personal injury claim, claims McGregor denies. It's been unclear for a number of years if McGregor is still a professional sportsperson.

He fights Dustin Poirier for a second time this evening.

SEE ALSO: Undertaker & Joe Rogan Had Interesting Take On CM Punk's UFC Move

Donny Mahoney
Article written by
Donny Mahoney is Chief Sportswriter and one of the founders of Balls.ie

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