Mixed martial arts star Conor McGregor expressed regret on Thursday for a backstage melee at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn that was captured by cameras and detailed on social media. In it, he was exposed hurling a hand truck at a bus full of fighters.
He is currently in the process of negotiating a plea deal to resolve criminal charges arising from the April episode.
The brawler, 29, and his friend and co-defendant Cian Cowley, 25, remained free on bail after an initial court appearance on April 6. They were told that each would face up to seven years in prison on a top charge of felony criminal mischief, but a deal would almost certainly reduce or eliminate their time behind bars.
Judge Raymond Rodriguez ordered them to return July 26, The Associated Press reported.
“I regret my actions that led me here today,” McGregor said outside court in New York afterward, a shift in tone from his previous comments since the fracas. “I understand the seriousness of this matter and I’m hopeful to get it resolved soon.”
Assistant District Attorney Janet Gleeson said the case hasn’t been presented to a grand jury for possible indictment because of the plea negotiations.
McGregor was seen on camera attacking the bus in a Barclays Center loading dock after a press event ahead of UFC 223, which featured the sport’s biggest card of the year.
According to the UFC president, Dana White, has described the situation as “20 hoodlums that flew in from Ireland” and crashed the event, allegedly seeking retaliation against main event fighter Khabib Nurmagomedov, who previously had an altercation with McGregor’s friend Artem Lobov.
Despite the controversy surrounding McGregor, he and White are expected to meet next week to discuss the fighter's next bout
The Associated Press contributed to this report.