Nearly four months after Conor McGregor put his career in jeopardy by storming Barclays Center and inciting a melee aimed at a fellow fighter, the mixed martial artist has escaped without a single criminal charge.
McGregor entered into a plea agreement on Thursday morning in criminal court in Brooklyn that dismissed felony and misdemeanor counts stemming from his involvement in a Barclays Center melee in April.
The MMA superstar and his teammate, Cian Cowley, pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct violations. McGregor, a former two-division UFC champion, was conditionally discharged and will serve five days community service and attend anger management classes for one to three days. McGregor also will have orders of protection in effect until July 25, 2020, against him for UFC fighters Ray Borg and Michael Chiesa and UFC employee Jason Ledbetter. McGregor will have to pay for damages to a bus at the center of the melee as well.
“I’m thankful to the D.A. and the judge for allowing me to move forward,” McGregor said after the hearing ended. “I want to say, to my friends, my family, my fans, thank you for supporting me.”
Cowley received a conditional discharge for one year and must perform three days of community service and attend anger management classes. He has one order of protection against him.
“Now that this is past us, we can focus on things that have been on hold for some time,” said Audie Attar, McGregor’s manager. “Conor’s been training. He’s in shape. He’s ready to go. Now it’s just about getting back to business and we hope to have some news to announce very soon.”
Bruce Maffeo, one of McGregor’s attorneys, made clear that McGregor did not plead guilty to any crime, so the agreement will have “no impact” in his immigration status and no impact on his ability to continue his MMA career in the United States.
“This is the same outcome that would have occurred if he had been a non-celebrity,” Maffeo said. “The D.A.’s office thought through this very carefully. We appreciate the staff, we appreciate the district attorney’s office treating this as it would any other case.”
Attar said McGregor has not made any plans for his return to combat sports, but expects talks with the UFC to resume shortly. Attar also pushed back against the notion the incident at Barclays Center was a publicity stunt gone wrong.
“I think people think everything Conor McGregor does is somehow staged,” Attar said. “At the end of the day, it was a mistake, he dealt with it, faced it head on. Now we’ve gotta move on and learn from this incident.”
McGregor, 30, was facing two felony charges and 10 misdemeanor charges from his actions caught on video and aimed at Khabib Nurmagomedov after the UFC 223 media day on April 5.
The felony charges included criminal mischief in the second degree and criminal mischief in the third degree.
McGregor was released from police custody on April 6, after posting $50,000 bond. Cowley, 25, was released on $25,000 bond.
Multiple videos appeared on social media within hours of the incident, and more surfaced in the days that followed. One showed McGregor throwing a metal hand cart through a bus window, shattering the glass. Another showed him lifting a metal barricade and charging the bus. Another showed McGregor and his entourage leaving Barclays Center in a black SUV after the incident.
The bus contained numerous fighters who were scheduled to appear on the UFC 223 card two days later, including Borg and Chiesa. McGregor’s actions caused three bouts on the card to be canceled.
McGregor last fought in the UFC on Nov. 12, 2016, at the promotion’s first card at Madison Square Garden. That night, he defeated Eddie Alvarez to become the lightweight champion and the first UFC fighter to hold titles in two weight classes at the same time.
In August 2017, McGregor boxed against Floyd Mayweather Jr., losing in the 10th round by TKO and earning a reported $100 million for the fight.