The UFC 229 event held on October 6, 2018, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada which featured Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov for the UFC lightweight title in its main event is one of the biggest shows in the history of the promotion.
Currently, it stands as the highest-selling PPV event of all-time in the UFC with a reported 2.4 million PPV buys, and with McGregor reportedly earning a share of the company’s PPV revenues, it’s safe to say that The Notorious made a killing at UFC 229 despite suffering a loss to Nurmagomedov.
UFC 229 Marked McGregor’s Return
UFC 229 was a big event in the UFC as it marked the return of its biggest star to the Octagon. McGregor last fought at UFC 205 on November 12, 2016, when he defeated Eddie Alvarez to win the UFC lightweight championship and become the first fighter in UFC history to hold two UFC belts simultaneously.
Conor McGregor was later stripped of the title due to inactivity and Khabib Nurmagomedov won it by defeating Al Iaquinta at UFC 223. When McGregor decided to make a comeback, the UFC gave him the opportunity to win his old belt back.
Unfortunately for The Notorious, Nurmagomedov was too good for him that night. Khabib submitted McGregor via neck crank in the fourth round of their 5-round championship bout.
The event was however a massive success, drawing 20,034 paying patrons and $17.7 million in gate receipts, making it the second-highest box office performer in UFC history after UFC 205.
Conor said he would make $50 million
Prior to UFC 229, McGregor predicted that he would make a total of $50 million if the event made 3 million to 3.5 million PPV buys. UFC President Dana White even went on to claim that McGregor could make $100 million if the PPV buys are high enough.
Knowing McGregor and White, however, both like to exaggerate the figures. And with only the guaranteed purses being the disclosable income in MMA events, we can never be sure how much McGregor really made against Khabib although we could make a fair estimate.
According to a report from MMAJunkie’s Mike Bohn, McGregor’s disclosed UFC 229 purse as per the Nevada State Athletic Commission was at $3 million. Aside from the guaranteed purse, McGregor also earned a share of the PPV revenue, sponsorship money, and other side deals. The PPV share, however, is what usually comprises the lion’s share of his total UFC 229 pay.
Fighters’ PPV shares aren’t publicly declared by the UFC and the amount that they receive varies from fighter to fighter. Of course, it’s safe to assume McGregor has a bigger share than most fighters owing to his drawing power and popularity. Forbes also estimated that he made $10-$15 million for his UFC 205 bout against Eddie Alvarez. So while he probably didn’t make $50 million against Khabib, he likely made at least half of that.
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