David McWilliams: Conor McGregor knows the rules of winner-takes-all economics

His postfight expression said it all. Being second best is next to worthless in the modern world

Dejected: Conor McGregor after losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov in Las Vegas. Photograph: Stephen R Sylvanie/USA Today/Inpho

Dejected: Conor McGregor after losing to Khabib Nurmagomedov in Las Vegas. Photograph: Stephen R Sylvanie/USA Today/Inpho

Over the past few days, I’ve been haunted by Conor McGregor’s face. He is sitting on the mat after his defeat in Las Vegas, dazed. He is looking into the distance, apparently trying to take it all in. Obviously he is exhausted, having been almost strangled a few seconds earlier. The bravado is gone. He is humbled.

But for me there is something else in his eyes: the realisation that everything has changed. Conor is a clever man and he understands the enormity of the defeat. It is not just a sporting defeat, it is much greater.

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