All it took was 13 seconds and one fierce punch. Conor McGregor destroyed the previously undefeated Jose Aldo to become the UFC featherweight champion. The Brazilian fighter had been undefeated in 10 years and was the sole champion in the 145-pound division, making his quick fall to the 27-year-old trash-talking Irishman even more spectacular.
It was the shortest title fight in the history of the UFC, one second quicker than the February face-off between Ronda Rousey and Cat Zingano. That means McGregor will be paid more per second than any other fighter in UFC history, notes Forbes. Although it’s difficult to know with certainty, it’s likely he earned at least $275,000 per second during the match, although it could be as high as $622,000 per second.
The shockingly quick victory undoubtedly elevates McGregor’s already high status within the UFC. USA Today explains:
McGregor is now the face of the UFC, no question about it, a face that snarls and sneers and spews verbal vitriol but then occasionally delivers a grin cheeky enough to make you wonder if it is all a game and you’re in on the joke with him.
He is a cartoonish character in many ways, the perfect promotional blend of obnoxiousness and brazen humor, but there is nothing funny about the way he fights.
After the face-off, McGregor expressed some sympathy for his opponent. “I feel for Jose,” McGregor said. “He’s a phenomenal champion. He deserved to go a little bit longer. I still feel, at the end of the day, precision beats power, timing beats speed. All day it would have happened.” Aldo, for his part, quickly called for a rematch. “He threw a cross at my chest I wasn’t expecting,” Aldo said. “I think we need a rematch. It wasn’t really a fight.”