Trump was met with a mix of applause and some boos as he entered the T-Mobile Arena, though video appears to show that the crowd was mostly enthusiastic.
Cheers and chants of ‘USA’ were heard as he walked in toward cage-side seats next to the Octagon, opting for a close-up view not found in the private suites.
The main event ended quickly and in dramatic fashion, when McGregor horrifically broke his ankle at the end of round one, leaving him screaming in agony and unable to get up.
Donald Trump is seen before the Dustin Poirier v Conor McGregor fight at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday
Trump speaks cage-side with Phil Ruffin, the casino mogul who owns the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino and Circus Circus Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas
Trump was met with a mix of applause and some boos as he entered the T-Mobile Arena, though video appears to show that the crowd was mostly enthusiastic
The main event ended quickly and in dramatic fashion, when McGregor horrifically broke his ankle at the end of round one, leaving him screaming in agony and unable to get up
Conor McGregor of Ireland lays on the canvas after suffering an ankle injury at the end of the first round against Dustin Poirier in their welterweight fight during the UFC 264 event at T-Mobile Arena on July 10, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada
Trump received a much warmer welcome than he did at his last UFC appearance in 2019, when he was booed by crowds as he entered the arena at Madison Square Garden.
Federal records revealed the 2019 trip – when Trump was still president – cost taxpayers an eye-watering $250,000 after the Secret Service was only given a week’s notice about his intention to attend.
UFC President Dana White on Friday announced that Trump would watch from the floor on Saturday. The former president’s visit to Las Vegas was brief, as he’s slated to speak at the CPAC conference in Dallas on Sunday.
On Saturday night McGregor was seeking revenge in the fight after being soundly beaten by Poirier less than six months ago.
But it was not to be had, after McGregor badly injured his left ankle in the closing seconds of the first round.
The fight was stopped after the first-round bell when McGregor (22-6) was unable to continue. The biggest star in mixed martial arts never got up after falling to the canvas following a final-minute blow by Poirier (28-6), who will get the UFC’s next lightweight title shot.
Poirier said he thought McGregor’s leg broke when he checked one of McGregor’s kicks earlier in the fight.
‘I felt something, for sure,’ Poirier said. ‘He fractured it on one of the kicks at the beginning of the fight, and then he broke it.’
Poirier was largely in control of the opening round, parrying McGregor’s kicks and landing several strikes before getting control over McGregor on the ground.
After a long stretch of punches and elbows on the prone McGregor, Poirier knocked him down one last time – and McGregor’s ankle bent gruesomely as he fell.
Conor McGregor of Ireland kicks Dustin Poirier in their welterweight fight during the UFC 264 event at T-Mobile Arena
McGregor lays on the canvas after suffering an ankle injury at the end of the first round against Dustin Poirier
After a long stretch of punches and elbows on the prone McGregor, Poirier knocked him down one last time – and McGregor’s ankle bent gruesomely as he fell
McGregor reacts after his TKO loss due to injury against Dustin Poirier during the UFC 264 event at T-Mobile Arena
Medics were immediately called into the Octagon and it was clear that McGregor could not continue, and the referee Herb Dean declared a stop to the bout on the instructions of the doctor.
McGregor was furious about the circumstances of his loss before he was carried from the cage.
‘This is not over!’ he shouted.
Poirier stopped McGregor in the second round when they met in Abu Dhabi last January, avenging his first-round knockout loss to McGregor in 2014.
Poirier’s clear superiority in the fighters’ second bout made a third showdown seem questionable just six months later, but McGregor demanded the chance to fix his mistakes and Poirier accepted the massive paycheck that comes from sharing a cage with McGregor.
Instead of taking an easier fight or another boxing match, McGregor wanted another shot at Poirier after getting stopped by strikes for the first time in his MMA career.
He claimed he had been distracted by his plans to box Manny Pacquiao this year, and he vowed to devote his full attention to MMA in training camp.
Trump sits with Phil Ruffin and Oleksandra Nikolayenko, a Ukrainian model and actress, during the fight
Trump is seen with UFC President Dana White during the fight as the crowd reacts