CONOR McGREGOR will take on boxing legend Mayweather on August 26 – as exclusively revealed by SunSport.
The Irishman has risen to superstardom in the last couple of years.
During that same period he has undergone a dramatic change in look.
When McGregor debuted in UFC – beating Marcus Brimage by TKO in April 2013 – McGregor was not exactly fresh-faced but looked radically different to the man currently at the top of the fight game.
His trademark beard was there but the three massive tattoos he now has across his abdomen were not.
Not only has McGregor had those pieces added, he’s also had a large tattoo added to his left forearm.
But McGregor’s first tattoo goes all the way back to when he was on holiday as a youngster…
Here, SunSport looks at the ink McGregor has – and the meaning (or lack thereof) behind some of them.
McGregor has Arabic writing on the back of his left heel, but doesn’t know what it actually says.
“This was my first, when I was drunk… I got it in Ayia Napa for €20. It could mean anything.”
Although McGregor has a winged crucifix, his religion is unknown. Many assumed he was Catholic as he’s Irish, but he got in hot water with some Irish fans after wearing a poppy. He later said “f*** politics and f*** religion”.
Running down McGregor’s back – from the base of the crucifix to the small of his back – McGregor has a helix of thorns. It’s not known when or why he got that one.
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McGregor has a silverback gorilla wearing a crown and holding a heart in its mouth. The tattoo is a twist on the symbol of coach John Kavangah’s Straight Blast Gym.
McGregor said: “I just like the way it looks.”
The front of his left forearm is covered in a rose bush with a clock showing 3.35pm (it’s not known if this time is significant), and a large dagger through a separate rose on the inside.
There is a small stick figure in a boxing pose – perhaps in the pose of the Notre Dame leprechaun – by his elbow.
The back of the tattoo also has a gentleman wearing a top hat.
Just above the roses the motto “slow is smooth, smooth is fast” is inscribed. The saying is common in elite military units’ firearms training, specifically the Navy SEALs.
McGregor says he added the tiger on a whim while on holiday in Venice: “I said ‘f*** it, I’m gonna get a tiger…’ I think it’s a courageous animal.”
The Irishman, however, has previously revealed that he is fascinated with the way animals move and incorporates that into his training, studying the way they hunt their prey.
McGregor’s most recent tattoo is stencilled writing above and below the tiger – it says his name, McGregor, and his nickname, Notorious.
Mayweather, who holds a 49-0 record, will come out of retirement for the bout on August 26 in Las Vegas.
The 40-year-old hung up his gloves in September 2015.
Though he holds a boxing licence from the Nevada State Athletics Commission, this will be McGregor’s first pro boxing match.
Mayweather Promotions have reportedly booked the 20,000 capacity T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas for the fight.
The venue will also host Gennady Golovkin vs Canelo Alvarez the following month in September 2017.