Conor McGregor in 2007:

• Working as a plumber
• Living with his parents
• Thousands of dollars in debt
• Cashing $235 weekly welfare checks

Now, @TheNotoriousMMA is the highest-paid athlete in the world — bringing in $180 million last year.

This is his WILD story 👇👇👇
1) Conor McGregor grew up in Crumlin, a small suburb of Dublin, Ireland.

His parents say he was born with clenched fists, but as he got older, his first love was actually soccer.

He followed Manchester United religiously.

That is until one event changed everything...
2) When Conor McGregor was 12 years old, a group of boys tried to bully him after school.

They chased him all the way home.

His solution?


"Things like this happened a few times, so I thought f**k this I am going to go and train."
3) At just 12 years old, Conor McGregor began boxing at the Crumlin Boxing Club.

He trained on/off for the next few years, eventually moving to another town with his family at 16.

That's where he met future UFC fighter Tom Egan.

They hit it off & started training MMA together.
4) When they weren't in school, Conor McGregor & Tom Egan could be found watching delayed recordings of UFC fights on the weekend.

They'd watch the fight, then mimic the moves in the backyard — they loved it.

The only problem?

Now 17, McGregor needed to start making money.
5) Conor McGregor started working as a plumber.

“I was waking up at 5am and walking in the dark, freezing cold until I reached the motorway & waited for a guy I didn’t even know to take me to the site."

McGregor would spend the next 12 hours fixing toilets.

He hated it.
6) With a plumbing job limiting his time to train, Conor McGregor had a decision to make.

Keep working & make money, or quit to train with no promise of a paycheck.

Despite being thousands of dollars in debt & living at home with his parents, Conor quit.

He was going all in.
7) Conor McGregor started training with the legendary coach John Kavanagh.

He would spend all day at the gym, teaching classes for cash when he wasn't training.

Debt piled up, but welfare checks kept him afloat.

The bad news?

He started his MMA career 4-2. Not great.
8) Following a 22-month hiatus, @TheNotoriousMMA came back a vengeance.

He won 8 fights in a row, with multiple coming via 1st round TKO.

The best part?

After 5+ years of struggling to get by, the UFC fell in love with his brash personality.

Dana White offered him a deal.
9) In 2013, @TheNotoriousMMA made his UFC debut.

He cashed a welfare check on the way to the airport, flew to Sweden & beat Marcus Brimage by KO in round one.

Even better, he took home a $60k bonus for his 1st "Knockout of the Night" award.

"Dana, 60 Gs, baby!" McGregor yelled
10) Since making his 2013 debut, Conor McGregor has become one of the most legendary fighters in MMA history.

He's won 20+ fights & multiple world titles, earning himself 7-figure paychecks.

Even more impressive?

He's also become the blueprint for athletes in business.
11) Most athletes would have been happy earning $5M to $10M annually off endorsements.

Not Conor McGregor.

He wanted to own equity.
12) Conor McGregor teamed up with world-class entrepreneurs to launch companies like August McGregor and Proper 12 Whiskey.

The result?

Despite only fighting once last year, McGregor made $180M.

Even crazier?

About $160M came from outside the octagon.
13) The greatest entrepreneurs in the world consistently remind us that two things are required to be successful:

1. Take a risk
2. Bet on yourself

McGregor followed both principles, going from a career in plumbing to the highest-paid athlete in the world.
14) Regardless of your feelings about Conor McGregor's public persona, he is an unbelievable businessman.

There have undoubtedly been mistakes along the way, but McGregor went from cashing welfare checks to 9-figure annual earnings.

That's incredibly impressive.
15) If you enjoyed this thread, you should follow me @JoePompliano.

I tweet interesting sports stories like this every day.
16) Prefer a deeper dive than Twitter?

You should sign up for my daily newsletter where I break down the business and money behind sports.

Don't worry, It's free :)

Sign up:

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More from @JoePompliano

13 May
Kwity Paye was selected by the Indianapolis Colts in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft.

He has one of the most incredible & inspiring stories I have ever heard.

Spoiler Alert: His mom is the real MVP.

Time for a thread 👇👇 👇
1) First, some history.

Kwity Paye's mom was just 12 years old when a civil war broke out in her home country of Liberia.

Rival tribes would show up in the middle of the night, light houses on fire & kill people when they ran outside.

Over 250k people died, including her dad.
2) With their village destroyed, Kwity Paye's mom, dad, and older brother fled to a refugee camp in Guinea.

That's where @OfficialKwity was born, but just 5 months later, the family immigrated to the United States.

The unfortunate part?

Kwity's dad wasn't allowed to come.
Read 13 tweets
4 May
After being acquired at auction for $1,000, Medina Spirit won the Kentucky Derby just 2 years later.

The craziest part?

In addition to a $1.86M purse, Medina Spirit might now be worth $50 million.

Here are the FASCINATING financials.

Time for a thread 👇👇👇
1) Let's start with some history...

In 2019, more than 400 horses were sold at an auction in Florida.

The most expensive horse went for $200,000, while a group of 23 horses sold for the $1,000 minimum.

At $1,000, that means they only received a single bid.

(h/t @darrenrovell)
2) Now, just two years and one ownership change later, 1 of those 23 horses has made history.

Medina Spirit completed a wire-to-wire victory at the 147th Kentucky Derby this weekend.

The result?

A $1.86 million purse.

But that's just part of the story…
Read 13 tweets
21 Apr
With 12 of the world's most powerful soccer clubs joining forces to create the Super League on Sunday, the last 48 hours have been WILD.

Confused about what's going on?

Don't worry, here's everything you need to know.

Time for a thread 👇👇👇
1) Let's start with the basics of European soccer.

Each country has its own league; an English league for English Teams, a Spanish league for Spanish teams, etc.

The best teams from each league then play each other in the Champions League.

The winner is the best team in Europe
2) The problem with the current format?

The richest clubs end up financially supporting smaller teams in each country.

Also, with access into the Champions League based on recent performance, no teams are guaranteed entry each year.

This is where the "Super League" comes in…
Read 13 tweets
17 Apr
Kevin Plank built Under Armour into a $10 billion business.

The part you didn't know?

Without a college flower delivery business, it would have never happened.

This is the wild story.

Time for a thread 👇👇👇
1) Let's start in 1992...

Kevin Plank was a freshman on the Maryland football team, a walk-on that primarily played special teams.

But like any great entrepreneur, he couldn't shake his itch to start a business.

No, I'm not talking about Under Armour...yet.
2) Following the end of his freshman football season at Maryland, Kevin Plank and his friends had an idea.

With Valentine's Day coming up, they knew there would be high demand for roses, but everyone hated going to pick them up.

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"Cupid's Valentine Rose Delivery."
Read 11 tweets
16 Apr
I asked, "what is the most unbelievable sports stat you have ever heard" last week.

Almost 2,000 people responded, providing some absolutely MIND-BLOWING answers.

Here are 10 of my favorites.

Time for a thread 👇👇👇
1) First up, "The Great One" — Wayne Gretzky.

Even if you took away all of Wayne Gretzky's ~900 career goals, he would still be the NHL's all-time points leader based on assists alone.

Even crazier?

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(h/t @ryanwhitney6)
2) The NFL record for career completion % is 67.8%.

Tom Brady has made the conference championship 73.7% of the seasons he’s been the starter.

Statistically, it’s more likely Brady makes the conf. Championship than any QB completes any given pass.

(h/t @RealAlexBarth)
Read 13 tweets
14 Apr
Terry Fox ran more than 3,000 miles across Canada in just 143 days.

The craziest part?

He did it on one leg while sick with cancer, raising over $800M for cancer research since.

This is his INCREDIBLE story.

Time for a thread 👇👇👇
1) Terry Fox grew up in British Columbia, the middle child of a blue-collar family.

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He even won high school athlete of the year before heading off to college.
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Doctors said his leg needed to be amputated immediately.
Read 14 tweets

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