UFC news: Conor McGregor took home £37.8 million per minute over the last 12 months


It goes without saying that professional fighters are not paid by the hour, but Conor McGregor's earnings over the last 12 months for less than a minute's worth of active competition are still staggering.

In a list of the top 10 highest-paid sports stars per minute recently compiled by OLBG, "The Notorious" was streets ahead of any of his rivals on the countdown. (NB: It should be noted that the breakdown does not include earnings from US-centric sports).

McGregor has competed just once in the last 12 months, taking just 40 seconds to finish Donald Cerrone in the main event of UFC 246 back in January. However, the Irishman's brief Octagon appearance still earned him a cool £25.2 million - which equates to a rate of £37.8 million per minute.

Naturally, those figures are virtually impossible to match. Footballing superstars Neymar (£29,000), Lionel Messi (£21,000) and Cristiano Ronaldo (£17,000) all made the top 10, but none managed to break the £30,000 barrier for their work per 60 seconds.

Indeed, the trio were outranked by Paul Pogba (£30,000) and Alexis Sanchez (£32,000) on the list, both of whom have seen their playing time limited by injuries and a lack of selection by their managers at times over the past year.

It is, though, professional fighters who dominate the list. By only fighting once or twice a year, fighters spend far less time actively competing than their colleagues in other sports - and this is reflected in their earnings per minute.

McGregor's nearest pursuer on the countdown is former world heavyweight boxing champion Deontay Wilder, who earned an average of £862,000 per minute for his bouts with Luis Ortiz and Tyson Fury in the period.


Saul "Canelo" Alvarez fought just once in the same time span, but still picked up £835,000 per minute during his stoppage of Sergey Kovalev last November. World heavyweight champions Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua also made the list. Fury pocketed £691,000 per minute for his demolition of Wilder in February, whilst Joshua banked £498,000 every 60 seconds during his victory over Andy Ruiz in Saudi Arabia last December.

While the boxers listed above did exceptionally well financially over the past 12 months, none come close to McGregor. The £25.2 million listed are just McGregor's direct earnings from the Cerrone fight - and do not include all of McGregor's many endorsement deals which he will have also profited from in the last year. 

Although being a professional fighter involves far more preparation than simply turning up on the night, it is hard to see McGregor - who currently insists that he is retired from competition - returning to the sport of MMA sooner rather than later. The lure of another eight-figure payday for potentially less than 60 seconds of work will surely prove too much for McGregor to resist at some point!

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