New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr has revealed he took inspiration from UFC superstar Conor McGregor’s historic win at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.
Beckham Jr was ringside to watch McGregor become the first champion in UFC history to hold two titles simultaneously, after the Irishman knocked out Eddie Alvarez in the second round to add the lightweight crown to his featherweight belt.
Two days later, Beckham Jr shined bright in the Giants’ 21-20 victory over Cincinnati Bengals, hauling in 10 catches for 97 yards and a touchdown.
“I kind of had some late inspiration,” Beckham Jr explained after the game. “I went to the UFC fight and I went there to watch McGregor and just a guy who is very strong in his beliefs and sure enough, he backs it up every time.
“Just sitting there watching him do his thing gave me more motivation. I usually go to things like that for inspiration. I like seeing guys in their atmosphere.”
Beckham Jr was picked up by the TV cameras in the immediate aftermath of McGregor’s spectacular victory and appeared to look disinterested as he watched the celebrations alongside English singer Ellie Goulding, but he insists that was far from the case.
“It is just something about seeing someone else in their own zone and sure enough, after he won the fight, that was my first UFC fight ever and everybody is tweeting at me asking why am I mad that he won, I am like, ‘I came here to see him. My mind is just wired differently’,” he added.
“So when I am sitting there watching him and I had this blank stare on my face because there are just so many thoughts going through my head, so I definitely got a lot of inspiration going there and watching him win, double champ and sure enough we came out and we won today, so it has been a pretty good week.”
As one of the brightest stars in the NFL, Beckham Jr was afforded the full VIP treatment by UFC staff at Madison Square Garden and he was brought backstage to meet the newly-crowned two-weight world champion after the fight.
“I got a chance to meet McGregor after the fight. It was cool. It was a fun experience,” Beckham said. “It was the first time I had been there and everyone took care of me.”