McGregor Tops Forbes Highest-Paid Athletes List With $180 Million

Conor McGregor (Photo: Andrius Petrucenia via Flickr)

May 13, 2021, By Michael Dorgan

Well that was a proper year for Conor McGregor!

The UFC superstar may still be reeling from his loss to Dustin Poirier in January but the Dubliner has reason to be a little more cheerful this week having been named the highest-paid athlete in the world, according to Forbes.

The publication released its prestigious Top 10 List of highest-paid athletes Wednesday with McGregor coming in ahead of the rest having netted a whopping $180 million over the last 12 months.

McGregor landed the winning punch in large part due to his whiskey brand Proper No. 12 which he launched in 2018 following his megafight boxing defeat to Floyd Mayweather in Las Vegas.

The 32-year-old recently sold his majority stake in the company for $150 million to Proximo Spirits. The whiskey is named after the neighborhood of Crumlin in Dublin 12 where the mixed-martial artist grew up.

McGregor with his whiskey (Image via Twitter @TheNotoriousMMA)

It is McGregor’s first time topping the list and his second appearance in the top ten. He placed fourth in 2018 after pulling in $99 million with much of his takings that year coming from the big money fight against Mayweather.

McGregor made a total of $158 million outside of combat sports last year coupled with an endorsement portfolio that includes deals with DraftKings and Roots of Fight. The earnings make him only the third athlete to generate more than $70 million in a single year outside of sport while still actively competing. He joins Tiger Woods and Roger Federer in that illustrious group.

“The Notorious” earned $22 million for his second-round TKO loss to Poirier at UFC 257 in Abu Dhabi. He will get a chance to avenge that loss at UFC 264 in Vegas on July 10 when the duo lock horns yet again.

McGregor took to social media shortly after the Forbes announcement and used some “Gaeilge” to convey his delight.

“Baby we did it!! Uimhir a Haon 🇮🇪❤️,” McGregor wrote.
Thank you Forbes for recognizing my role as an entrepreneur!
It was a dream to lead this list with so many successful athletes!
Onwards and upwards we go”