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After a fracas *inside* the Barclays Center, famed MMA fighter turns himself in

The controversial sport of mixed martial arts (MMA) has a fierce fan base, so no wonder New York State finally legalized it in 2016, and venues like the Barclays Center were eager to host bouts.

After all, resale tickets for tomorrow's event at Barclays (which begins at 6:15 pm), according to Ticketmaster, start at $230. (Not all the arena's seats are for sale, apparently.)

Beyond those who worried about the violence inside the cage, I had suggested two years ago that MMA audiences are most akin to those who attend boxing and wrestling events, who have been among the most amped and rowdy, and that spreads into the neighborhood, even, in one case, connected to a horrific episode of sexual harassment/violence against a local resident.

An incident inside Barclays

So far, I haven't heard that about MMA events.

But just yesterday an MMA mini-melee inside Barclays, connected to a press event for tomorrow's fights, invited a police investigation and led to the arrest, at the 78th Precinct in Prospect Heights, of perhaps the sport's biggest star, Conor McGregor, after he turned himself in.

As shown in the screenshot at right, that news was leading the New York Post's homepage this morning.  As MMA Fighting reported:
McGregor has been charged with three counts of assault and one count of criminal mischief due to his involvement in a fracas at the Barclays Center following the UFC 223 media day. Cowley, an SBG teammate of McGregor’s and a fellow MMA fighther, was charged with one count of assault and one count of criminal mischief.
From another article:
MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani reported that McGregor’s team ultimately attacked a van filled with fighters just as it was departing the arena, banging on the vehicle and throwing chairs through a window. Video shot by fighters onboard shows McGregor ordering an unidentified individual to get out of the van before being taken away by security, Helwani reported.
Here's one video:
That's not a good look for McGregor--or for MMA or Barclays. Sure, there's a history of fighters, including boxers and wrestlers, having pre-fight/-match beefs, especially to hype ticket sales. But this is in a more rare, unnerving category.





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