Just How Did Conor McGregor Decide To Join Game of Thrones?
Conor McGregor wears his finest tailor-made suit, a dark blue checkered pattern with a vest and red tie. He holds a glass of fine-ass whiskey in his hand, a gold wrist-watch dangles from his wrist. He stands in front of a full-wall theatre screen displaying his Tweetdeck account, a comically large red chair is behind him. A feed of MMA fighters, managers, and promotions updates with every Tweet from around the MMA world on the wall. A new one pops up every four or five seconds.
McGregor lifts his chin comically to the sky and puffs out his chest. He pulls out his phone and opens his Twitter application. He begins to type. A moment later, he looks up at the screen. A Tweet pops up on the feed from the account, @TheNotoriousMMA.
‘To all the pretenders. The King sits on his Throne. Bow at my feet.’
Instantly, the Tweet is quoted by Dustin Poirier: ‘F*ck that b*ctch, he followed ME to LW..’
Another retweet, this time from Khabib Nurmagmedov: ‘McBurger, your time come to end. I destroy you and @danawhite for conspiracy on me.’
‘The Black Beast’ Derrick Lewis: ‘Ey, my toe got a green fungus. Is it Irish?’
Retweet after retweet fill the feed. The Tweet scores a like, two likes, three likes, infinite likes. In moments, the Tweet goes viral. The feed that once only updated every few seconds is now blurring with posts; all about McGregor.
McGregor doesn’t even favor himself by cracking a smile. He looks as ice-cold as he does during weigh-in. McGregor’s phone rings. He doesn’t even check the call-display, just jabs at the screen and pumps the call through a Bluetooth into his theatre speakers.
‘Dis is d’two division champ…’
The voices of D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, the showrunners for HBO’s hit program Game of Thrones, comes through the theatres speakers.
“Hey Conor! How’s it going, champ?”
McGregor’s expression never breaks.
“Killin’ dis game, same as always.”
There is an uncomfortable pause. Weiss and Benioff aren’t quite sure how to respond. They laugh awkwardly.
“Uh, oh! We don’t doubt it! So, anyways, we’d like to discuss…”
McGregor cuts them off.
“De role isn’t roight fer me. I’m tinking you may need to put me up on dat der Trown where I roightfully belong. Hold on.”
McGregor places the phone down on the chair behind him. He unbuttons his vest with one hand, shrugs out his arms and adjusts his suit jacket before taking a seat in the chair. He waits one more moment, seemingly for no reason, before continuing:
“I ain’t doin’ no scenes wit dat mopey Snow boy. Remoinds me too much of dat b*tch Mendes wit his mopey face. You put me beside dat foine blond Khaleesi, den we can talk. Conquerors recognize conquerors, yea?”
Weiss and Benioff pause again. They’ve certainly never had a casting conversation quite like this one.
“Well, ok, we weren’t imagining you and Emilia working together…”
McGregor cuts them off again.
“Listen, fellers. Oim de King and she’s d’Queen. But ye two’s best recognize det Ronda was d’Queen in dis game for a woile. Now it’s only me, d’ya understand?”
Weiss and Benioff whisper to each other before replying.
“I’m sure we can work something out. But…”
“Olroight boys, tanks.’
McGregor hangs up. He pulls up his phone and and Googles, ‘Game of Thrones, King’. Images flood across the screen. Robert Baratheon, overweight and hairy. Cause of death: gored by a boar. Robb Stark, the King in the North, brash but naïve. Cause of death: shot to death with arrows at a wedding. Joffrey Baratheon, inbred and psychotic. Cause of death: poisoned at a wedding. Tommen Baratheon, idealistic but tired. Cause of death: suicide by jumping out a window.
McGregor crooks his chin to the side, the collar on his suit feeling a bit too tight all of a sudden. McGregor turns his head and shouts up the stairs behind him.
‘Ey, Dee, let’s be sure t’get married in a proivate ceremony, yea?’
‘Woi’s dat, babe?’
‘I just don’t tink a big wedding is a good idea fer a King loik me.’
Footsteps approach from behind him. In walks his girlfriend, Dee, pregnant and looking almost ready to pop.
“You been talkin’ t’them Game of Trown’s fellers, again?’
“Ay. Told ‘im to foind me a better role. More fit fer a King.’
Dee frowns, shaking her head.
“Ooooh, love, you don’t want t’be de King in Westeros. Oi’ve watched ev’ry season and dos boys don’t last long. Dey ‘ad dis one feller, real handsome lad he is, and his pregnant woife got gutted in front of ‘im. Den he get shot wit a load of arrows before dey cut ‘is mum’s troat. Wasn’t a pretty scene, love! Wot if dey cast dat Ho-Say Aldo feller fer your scene? You can’t trust dat!”
McGregor considers this for a moment. He’s caught in a paradox: how can a King be on a show about Kings and not be the King. In this world, Kings die.
Dee gasps suddenly.
“Oi got it! Dey revealed last season det that Jon Snow boy, real handsome lad he is, moight just be de son of one of them deposed Prince’s. Dat gives ‘im a real claim to de Trown! You could ask for a role loike dat, yea?”
McGregor takes a sip of his fine-ass whiskey and considers this idea. He only needs a moment. He rises to his feet and punches into his phone. The dial tone rings over the theatre speakers. The voice of Dana White picks up.
“Yea, this is Dana.”
“Dana, it’s your two-division champ.”
“You know damn well who dis is.”
“I’m just surprised. You haven’t called me since the Alvarez fight…I really need that Featherweight belt back, man...”
McGregor ignores the comment.
“Oi’ve got a deal fer ya. I play it like Jon Snow. I take some toime off to become a fadder. I let dem fools whip each other into a frenzy fightin’ over the scraps I left behind. Den oi come back. I make you rich boi cleanin’ out Diaz in a rubber match, dis time fer de Lightweight strap. Den I move up and take Woodley out t’pasture, become a three-division champ. Den I drop the Lightweight belt and head back doiwn t’Fedderweight. I claim to be the roightful King der and clear out whoever holds the paper belt. Den I jump back up, take out d’pretender at Lightweight and unify de t’ree belts.”
McGregor pauses, waiting for an answer. White pauses along with him. This continues for five minutes, but in the minds of McGregor and White, it feels like five seconds. White speaks first.
“Conor, I have no idea what the hell a Jon Snow is.’
“D’Game of Trones, feller.”
“Conor, I don’t watch TV. I haven’t watched TV in eight f*cking years. You think Lorenzo and Frank and I were sitting there on Sunday nights watching Sex and f*cking the City? Frank and Lorenzo watched The Sopranos to learn for their other businesses, meanwhile, I watched our pay-per-view numbers.”
McGregor ignores the comment.
“Everyone tinks Jon Snow is just some feller, but ‘e’s d’roightful King. Just loike me.’
White sighs heavily.
“Conor, you’re from Dublin. You were a plumber...’
“Wot I say goes, yea? Oim Jon Snow, Danaerys Targaryen, and a Woite Walker all rolled into one terrifoiying, left-handed knockout artist. Oim d’ beginning of dis sport and de end of it.”
“Conor, how the hell do you expect me to explain to WME-IMG that your position is ‘He’s Jon Snow.’?”
McGregor takes a sip of his fine-ass whiskey and shrugs.
“You give dem no choice. Cheers.”
McGregor hangs up. He turns to Dee who holds her hands together, a huge smile on her face.
“Ooooo, babe, you are such a great businessman. Oi love it wen you tell Dana who’s in charge!’
“I don’t ‘ave t’tell im, Dee. I am de Game. De Game of Trones is moine.’
McGregor picks up his phone and searches his contacts. He taps ‘Happy Júlíus Björnsson’. He begins to type:
‘Dearest Hafþór Clegane, Mountain man. I’ll be joining ya next season. Good luck crushing this head like a grape. Not when it’s got a crown sitting on it.’
McGregor hits send. He sits back down, leaning back in his chair. He raising his glass of fine-ass whiskey to his lips and finishes the last sip. He watches the Twitter screen. The feed continues to blur. McGregor watches the world react.
“Oh, sh*t the champe has spoken 2 the masses #Notorious #FlashbackFriday!!!!!!”
“I’d knock his ass out…”
“Dee must be real #preggers”
“Is Conor gonna be on #GoT So sick!!!”
“No one can beat this guy. No one.”
Rhys Dowbiggin @Rdowb
Rhys has worked six years in the public relations industry rubbing shoulders with movie stars (who ignored him) to athletes (who tolerated him). He likes tiki-taka football, jelly beans, and arguing with Bruce about everything.