So, those of you not watching the NFC Championship game will have missed Conor McGregor just being given the kind of promotional push that money can scarcely buy. The 100's of millions of people who are tuning in to watch the Seahawks take on the Packers have been treated to McGregor in all his glory telling us to stick around on FOX and watch his fight against Dennis Siver live from Boston later tonight.
Surely that's the 1st time a lad from Crumlin has received such a big TV audience since Gabriel Byrne lassoed Tir Na nOg? #mcgregor #GBvsSEA
— Darragh Farrelly (@darraghfar) January 18, 2015
The only problem? Their choice of promotional phrase on which to hang the whole thing. The Irish Muhammad Ali is possibly taking things to stupidly hyperbolic levels for someone who has fought four times in the UFC.
For all his shameless self-promotion, it must be said that McGregor had nothing to do with the comparison. It (hesitantly) came from UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta during the week and FOX have seemingly picked it up and ran a country mile with it. Needless to say, the reaction, to McGregor appearance during the game, as well as the Ali reference wasn't exactly positive.
Liam Neeson is the Irish Muhammad Ali
— Bobby Big Wheel (@BobbyBigWheel) January 18, 2015
Dear Fox Sports: kill the "Irish Muhammad Ali" description. — Cindy Boren (@CindyBoren) January 18, 2015
Conor McGregor, brought to you by voice coach Gabriel Byrne.
— Andy McGeady (@andymcgeady) January 18, 2015
mcgregor/ali comparison reminds me of an evening herald headline i think i recall from the late 90s, "is dominic foley the irish ronaldo?"
— Ken Early (@kenearlys) January 18, 2015
And there was me thinking American football would be a Conor McGregor free zone for a few hours.
— Stephen Long (@Stephen_Long) January 18, 2015
No one ever had to correlate Muhammad Ali's stardom to another person. He was Ali. Let McGregor be McGregor. See where he takes this thing.
— Josh Gross (@yay_yee) January 18, 2015
Thanks Troy Aikman for showing on national TV that you've never once watch McGregor fight. The "Irish Ali"? Lol.
— Aaron Leming (@AaronLemingNFL) January 18, 2015
Spent last couple of days researching Muhammad Ali, then heard some UFC loon call Conor McGregor "the Irish Ali". Shameful ignorance there.
— Dave Hannigan (@daveyhannigan) January 13, 2015
Joe Buck calling Conor McGregor the Irish Muhammad Ali was almost enough to turn the TV off.
— Marty Downes (@downers89) January 18, 2015
Muhammad Ali is the American Conor McGregor. See how absurd that sounds?
— Luke Thomas (@SBNLukeThomas) January 18, 2015
I just threw up in my mouth seeing FOX label Conor McGregor "the Irish Muhammad Ali" ... I mean seriously, what the fuck? #UFCBoston #MMA
— Mark MacDonald (@MarkM_Sports) January 18, 2015
IF CONNOR MCGREGOR IS THE IRISH MUHAMMAD ALI, THEN @AlexiLalas IS THE AMERICAN MACHO CAMACHO
— Dr Joe (@FauxDrJoe) January 18, 2015
There have been plenty of voices form the UFC side of things pointing out that even McGregor has called bullshit on such comparisons.
These Ali comparisons are stupid & take away from how McGregor has brought MMA to an entire country. That, without the hyperbole, is enough
— Seán Sheehan (@SeanSheehanBA) January 18, 2015
Even McGregor himself doesn't seem to fond of the Ali comparisons yet Fox still rolls with it. Oh well.
— Alex Donno (@AlexDonno) January 18, 2015