When it comes to star power, no one in MMA comes close to Conor McGregor. McGregor has become a household name, an Irish icon, and a pop-culture figure every bit as a sports one. Further evidence of this could be found by McGregor’s recent casting in the upcoming remake of the 1989 Hollywood classic Road House.
McGregor currently has 46 million followers on Instagram to go along with his “modest” 9.4 million followers on Twitter.
This fame was amassed by unmatched self-promotion, highlight-reel finishes, and the first-ever champ-champ status among various other factors. Additionally, McGregor was even able to place #1 on Forbes Magazine’s Highest Paid Athletes List in 2021.
Dana White Names Khamzat Chimaev As Next Possible Global UFC Superstar
As of now, no one has been able to match McGregor’s global impact on the sport in terms of fame, but during a digital Q&A with Dana White hosted by GQ Magazine, the UFC boss named Khamzat Chimaev as someone who may be able to match McGregor in the future.
White was not firm on his projection, however, with a “Maybe” and a “we’ll see” attached to his shout. Perhaps the first big test to Chimaev will be the upcoming UFC 279, which will be the first time Borz has headlined a pay-per-view.
He will have a dance partner who McGregor is quite familiar with, Stockton’s own Nate Diaz, someone McGregor was able to draw millions of pay-per-view buys with at UFC 196 and UFC 202.
As of now, Chimaev is no doubt growing a fan base in Russia, Sweden, the States, and the Middle East, among other locations. All told, Borz has an Instagram following of 4 million, not bad for someone only two years and five fights into his UFC career.
By comparison, Diaz has 5.7 million Instagram followers, and he has long been considered to be one of the biggest stars and fan-favorites in the promotion.
Chimaev has become known for his insatiable appetite for smeshing, running through his first four opponents while barely absorbing any strikes. In his most recent bout, he defeated Gilbert Burns in one of the best fights in the year at UFC 273, passing the most difficult test of the 28-year-old’s young MMA career.
What do you think? Can Khamzat Chimaev match Conor McGregor’s impact on the sport of MMA someday?