This clip of Conor McGregor's amateur debut reminds us what we're missing (Video)

  • Conor McGregor's amateur MMA debut took place 17 years ago in Dublin
  • He hasn't fought since 2021
  • Watching the moment again reminds us all how special he used to be
Jul 10, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Conor McGregor before fighting Dustin Poirier during UFC 264
Jul 10, 2021; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Conor McGregor before fighting Dustin Poirier during UFC 264 / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

It's been almost three years since UFC superstar Conor McGregor appeared in the Octagon, and newer fans might've forgotten his lengthy journey to superstardom.

McGregor hasn't fought since shattering his leg against Dustin Poirier in their UFC trilogy at UFC 264. The injury has led to a lengthy rehabilitation and as of this writing, his expected return against Michael Chandler hasn't been formally booked.

Some McGregor die-hard fans might not remember when his path to the top of the sport officially began, one frigid night in Dublin.

17 years ago to the day, McGregor made his amateur MMA debut at Irish Ring of Truth in Dublin in front of a small crowd. He swarmed Kieran Campbell with a barrage of punches that earned him his first-ever victory in MMA.

It's been exactly 17 years since Conor McGregor's first MMA fight

In one chapter of his life, McGregor worked as a plumber in Ireland, despite his desire to become a fighter. His family scoffed at the idea and implored him to find a more realistic way to make a living.

McGregor began to prove himself a special talent when he knocked out Campbell on Feb. 17, 2007. He made his professional debut one year later and eventually earned the Cage Warriors featherweight and lightweight titles before attracting the UFC's attention.

The above knockout showed the beginnings of McGregor's marksmanship in a fight. His firm grasp of boxing fundamentals led to a remarkable UFC run; including title wins over UFC Hall of Famer José Aldo and Eddie Alvarez.

It's been a while since we've seen this level of in-fight brilliance from McGregor. He's lost three of his last four UFC fights, including back-to-back losses to Poirier in 2021.

Now, a 35-year-old McGregor will look to remind fight fans of his greatness as he aims to get a desperately needed win. He might make similar magic as he did 17 years ago in a small Dublin arena.


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