The once close friendship between Conor McGregor and Artem Lobov appears to be a thing of the past.
According to The Irish Independent (h/t Bloody Elbow), Lobov is suing McGregor for millions, alleging that he was pivotal in developing McGregor’s Proper No. 12 Irish Whiskey, that McGregor sold a majority stake in for $600 million in 2021. Lobov reportedly claims that for his efforts in creating Proper Twelve, he has an agreement that entitles him to five percent of the money McGregor made from the sale.
“My client is a retired professional fighter with a master’s degree from DCU in Finance and Capital Markets,” Lobov’s attorney, Dermot McNamara said. “We have issued High Court proceedings on his behalf to enforce an agreement with Mr McGregor regarding the Proper No. 12 whiskey fire. My client was the initial creator and co-founder of the concept to launch an Irish whiskey brand associated with Mr. McGregor. As these matters are now before the court, we will not be making any further comment.”
In response, McGregor’s representatives rejected the claims as incorrect.
“Proper No. 12 Irish Whiskey was created, developed, branded and tirelessly promoted by Conor McGregor,” Karen J Kessler said.
McGregor and Lobov were once fast friends and training partners at Team SBG Ireland, with Lobov playing a central role in McGregor’s feuds with Khabib Nurmagomedov and Paulie Malignaggi. But that friendship appears to have faded as in August, Lobov claimed to have been the one who came up with the idea for Proper 12, when McGregor was considering getting into vodka with Hafþór Björnsson, the professional strongman. Lobov claims he told McGregor to do whiskey instead and even did the legwork early on to get things rolling.
“I was the person who came up with the idea to do a whiskey for Conor,” Lobov said.
“I said to him before you even look any further (about Vodka), ‘here’s what I know about Irish whiskey.’ I told him about my presentation from college. I told him about the dominance of Irish whiskey and all of that. He said, ‘You go off and see what deal you can put together’ and I went on my way.
“I went on and met all different whiskey distilleries. I called some and met some in person. I did my research and put a beautiful deal together. Once the deal was ready, I went to Conor and I said, ‘Conor, I have the deal ready for you. This is going to be a billion-dollar deal, no messing here.’ I’m not sure if he took me seriously or not at the time with the billion dollars.
“Conor offered me $1M but I turned it down, I didn’t accept it. You know, throughout my career whenever I have helped Conor with camps, he offered to pay me for them camps, but I never accepted money from him.”
With substantially more than $1 million at stake, Lobov appears to have changed his mind.
The 36-year-old Lobov retired from combat sports in 2021, following a bareknuckle boxing loss to Olympic silver medalist Denys Berichyk. His overall MMA record stands at 13-15-1, 1 NC, and his bareknuckle record stands at 2-2.
wrestling Cain Velasquez granted permission to participate in pro wrestling match in Arizona under conditions from the court.
Contract. Paulo Costa wants new contract before accepting Robert Whittaker at UFC 284: ‘I have bills to pay’.
concussion Vanessa Demopoulos: Concussion from pole dancing worse than any MMA injury.
USADA. Jiri Prochazka admits constant USADA visits are ‘a little bit annoying’.
PFL Championship Fight Week Episode 4.
Francis Ngannou’s road to recovery.
Jan Blachowicz plays in a celebrity basketball game.
Man, Pride was the best.
Fighters vs Writers. MMA Fighting’s Damon Martin chats with Matt Brown and Kenny Florian.
Heck of a Morning. MMA Fighting’s Mike Heck discusses Khamzat Chimaev challenging Alex Pereira, James Krause, and more.
The feud nobody expected.
Paddy “the Baddy” is tryin to fight a wrestler from AEW but won’t acknowledge the hundreds of people who have asked him about fighting me lol
— Terrance ‘T Wrecks’ McKinney (@twrecks155) November 22, 2022
Dagestani wrestballers, beware!
Kazakhstan based Naiza MMA is stepping on your toes with BatyrBall where backboards are shattered Shaquille O’Neal style pic.twitter.com/GJbIfA0VB6
— Red Corner MMA (@RedCorner_MMA) November 22, 2022
It’s never going to happen.
Henry made me wait 2.5 years to fight him when he defended the title. He asked for the biggest fight and the UFC gave it to. I’m sure he can wait 1-2 more months for me to fight https://t.co/KejgYq9GA5
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) November 22, 2022
No issue here. He’s getting spanked. But tubby needs to wait until I’m fully healed up from my last 2 camps. April, May, June. Never ducked a single opponent in my life, not gonna Sir Cringe-a-lot https://t.co/XjvoC0hOEU
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) November 22, 2022
UFC Vegas 66 poster.
Adesanya getting hot.
The man can’t be stopped.
Jack Hermanson (23-7) vs. Roman Dolidze (11-1); UFC Orlando, Dec. 3.
Drew Dober (25-11) vs. Bobby Green (29-13-1); UFC Vegas 66, Dec 17
Gilbert Burns (20-5) vs. Neil Magny (27-9); UFC 283, Jan 21.
William Knight (11-4) vs. Marcin Prachnio (15-6); UFC Fight Night, Feb 18
Yaroslav Amosov (26-0) vs. Logan Storley (14-1); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Pedro Carvalho (13-6) vs. Jeremy Kennedy (18-3); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Sinead Kavanagh (8-5) vs. Janay Harding (6-6); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Oliver Enkamp (11-3) vs. Luca Poclit (8-1); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Karl Moore (10-2) vs. Maciej Różański (14-3); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Piotr Niedzielski (17-4) vs. Richie Smullen (9-2-1); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Charlie Ward (10-5) vs. Mike Shipman (14-4); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Elina Kallionidou (9-4) vs. Jena Bishop (4-0); Bellator 291, Feb 25
Maycee Barber (11-2) vs. Andrea Lee (13-6); UFC Fight Night, March 25.
No Morning Report tomorrow due to the holiday but we’ll see you on Friday.
Thanks for reading!
What is the best part of Thanksgiving?
Green bean casserole
496 total votes
If you find something you’d like to see in the Morning Report, hit up @DrakeRiggs_ on Twitter and let him know about it. So follow MMA Fighting on Instagram and like us on Facebook.