When Conor McGregor arrived at Fight Island on a massive yacht for his UFC 257 main event against Dustin Poirier, it was yet another illustration of a career that has reached unprecedented heights for an MMA fighter.
It wasn't always this way. McGregor's coach, John Kavanagh, remembers a time in 2013 when McGregor thought he needed a new line of work. He was competing in the minor leagues of MMA and was making so little he survived on welfare checks.
During the course of the next eight years, McGregor's storyline -- and bank account -- have taken dramatic turns. He has enjoyed historic success in the Octagon, countered by defeat disillusionment and several temporary retirements.
His rise in fame also brought trouble, and while his successes have been caught on camera, so have some of his transgressions. He attacked a bus of UFC fighters in New York and punched a Dublin bar patron. He's been arrested a number of times, and there have been reports of sexual assault allegations in Ireland and France.
Away from the limelight, those who have known McGregor from the beginning, and those who crossed his path along the way, tell the behind-the-scenes stories of the highlights of McGregor's journey. They describe what it was like to stand next to McGregor as his group entered Jennifer Lopez's private residence for a party, only to find a quiet, mostly empty apartment. Rosie Perez describes what she was thinking when McGregor gave her a "Who the f--- are you?" look during the wild media tour for his boxing match against Floyd Mayweather in 2017. And Bruce Buffer remembers meeting a young man in Ireland who made an astonishing prediction that he ultimately backed up.