McGregor facing nine-month lay-off

ESPN staff
August 23, 2013
Conor McGregor made his US debut on Saturday at UFC Fight Night 26 © Getty Images

Conor McGregor has torn the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and is expected to be sidelined for at least nine months.

He suffered the injury at UFC Fight Night 26 on Saturday, and also sustained an MCL strain and a posterior horn meniscus tear.

McGregor, who defeated Max Holloway by unanimous decision in Boston, said during the post-fight press conference that he injured his left knee in the second round while on the ground.

He believed the injury was minor, but results from an MRI taken on Thursday revealed that the damage to McGregor's knee was extensive.

"I heard a big pop and I let out a scream mid-round, but I passed into side control with it," McGregor said. "When we stood back up, I was unsteady on it."

McGregor, from Dublin, has received lots of media attention since joining UFC. The buzz began on April 6 in Stockholm, where McGregor knocked out veteran Marcus Brimage at 1:07 in the first round.

The excitement followed McGregor to TD Garden in Boston on Saturday. A thunderous roar swept through the crowd of 12,539, led by a large contingent of Irish fans, when McGregor entered the arena. And he didn't disappoint his supporters.

He sent Holloway staggering immediately with stiff right jabs, straight lefts and a few kicks. But McGregor's aggressive striking attack slowed midway through the second round when he injured the knee.

McGregor, who made his US debut on Saturday night, expressed disappointment over not being able to finish off Holloway. The win, however, improved his professional record to 14 wins and two defeats, having won both of his fights in UFC. Twelve of McGregor's wins have come by knockout.

Before learning the seriousness of his fighter's injury, McGregor's coach John Kavanagh expressed a desire to see him face Diego Brandao at UFC 168 in December. Brandao, winner of The Ultimate Fighter Season 14, defeated Daniel Pineda by unanimous decision in an earlier bout on Saturday's card.

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