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24th Feb 2016

Conor McGregor fans are convinced they know the *real* reason RDA pulled out of UFC 196

Kevin Beirne

Conor McGregor has done very well to build a cult of personality around himself in a short space of time.

Just 13 months ago, The Notorious could only get a spot on UFC Fight Night rather than the main event, but now it appears he can do whatever he likes.

While there was some initial hesitation to allow McGregor move up to lightweight and attempt to become the first two-weight champion in UFC history, Dana White and co. quickly realised his value.

The featherweight champion’s trash-talking style undoubtedly create an added buzz around everything he does, and his jump up to lightweight to fight Rafael dos Anjos was no different.

But news broke on Tuesday that RDA would have to withdraw from the fight due to a broken foot just 11 days before it was due to go ahead.

Although the UFC quickly found a replacement for McGregor to face on March 5, fans of The Notorious were certain that the Irishman had psyched out his opponent and had somehow caused the broken foot.

Fans were quick to point out the parallels between the current situation and McGregor’s last opponent, Jose Aldo, who pulled out of their first scheduled meeting at UFC 189 due to a rib injury. Strangely, confirmation for Aldo’s withdrawal also came 11 days before the date of the fight.

When Aldo finally met McGregor, he lasted all of 13 seconds and many said he was beaten mentally before he ever stepped into the octagon.

(Incredibly this is the sixth fighter that has pulled out on McGregor in less than five years, including Niklas Backstrom, Jim Alers, Andy Ogle and Cole Miller).

But it wasn’t just casual fans, as even fellow sportsmen were lauding McGregor’s psychic ability to inflict injury on his opponents from afar.

Former Leeds United fullback Ian Harte (who only retired at the end of last season after making just four league appearances as Bournemouth gained promotion to the Premier League, in case you were wondering) called out seemingly every Brazilian on Earth.

RDA, meanwhile, shared a picture of his foot in an attempt to see off any rumours of him faking the injury.

It looks pretty unpleasant to us, but maybe you’re into that kind of thing.

RDA Foot