Conor McGregor mauls Dennis Siver

ByBrett Okamoto ESPN logo
Monday, January 19, 2015

BOSTON -- The Conor McGregor show delivered on Sunday inside the TD Garden.

The Irish featherweight walked straight through Dennis Siver at UFC Fight Night, finishing his overmatched opponent via TKO at 1:54 of the second round.

Referee Herb Dean stopped the contest after McGregor dropped Siver with a straight left, mounted and landed a series of unanswered elbows.

McGregor (17-2) had predicted a two-minute knockout prior to the fight. He apologized for mis-speaking in a post-fight interview.

"I said two minutes -- I meant two rounds," McGregor said. "I felt comfortable throughout. I don't think any of these featherweights pose a threat. Every single one keeps talking but I don't hear them talking about skill or technique, because they know I own that."

Immediately after the bout, McGregor jumped over the cage and confronted UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo, who was in attendance. McGregor will challenge Aldo (25-1) for the 145-pound title later this year.

"It's probably looking like Vegas is the most likely place it's going to happen," UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta told "We kind of went back and forth over what makes sense: Ireland, Brazil, Vegas.

"The reality is the time in Ireland makes it very difficult to draw PPV numbers. We couldn't get the permits that would allow us to do the event early morning, which means we'd have to hold the PPV in the afternoon in the U.S. We didn't feel like that would be feasible. There's nothing wrong with a big fight in Vegas."

Fertitta said the bout would likely take place in May, pending McGregor's health coming out of the fight.

McGregor was as brilliant as ever in the featherweight contest. Despite all of his new tricks and spinning kicks to the body, the southpaw's most lethal weapon was his tried and true straight left, which repeatedly hurt Siver throughout the fight.

Several spinning wheel kicks flew over the compact Siver's head, turning his height disadvantage into a positive thing on several occasions. The 36-year-old showed courage by hanging in against McGregor's power and looking to respond, but other than a handful of left hooks and leg kicks, he was unable to drive the much larger, more athletic McGregor backwards.

A straight left wobbled Siver in the opening round and at one point, he lost his mouthpiece, which Dean had to pick up and pause the fight to put back in. McGregor consistently backed Siver (22-10) up against the cage and opened up with switch kicks to the body and head.

Siver drove deep in to a takedown attempt late in the first round. McGregor might have touched his butt to the canvas for a second, before re-balancing and throwing Siver off. He opened a cut near Siver's left eye late in the first round and had him badly hurt with a knee up the middle in the waning moments.

McGregor, 26, is now 5-0 in the UFC. The only thing that's slowed him down since signing with the promotion in 2013 was an ACL injury, which forced him to miss significant time that year. Since his return, he has finished three consecutive opponents -- two in the first round.

Siver, a former lightweight, drops to 3-2 as a UFC featherweight.

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