A packed T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas welcomed Donald Trump at UFC 264 on Saturday night, as the former US president watched a card headlined by the main event trilogy bout between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.
Due to a horrific leg fracture suffered at the end of the first round, McGregor fell to his third loss in his last four outings and is currently out of the picture for a shot at the lightweight title.
Among those watching on was former US leader Trump, who arrived earlier in the night and made his way through the crowd with a string of minders to take a close-view seat near the octagon.
Though there were some boos scattered around the venue, the reception appeared to be mostly positive.
Sympathizers whooped and cheered, while there were also patriotic chants of "USA!".
While seated, Trump was seen speaking with Phil Ruffin, a casino mogul who owns the Treasure Island and Circus Circus hotels and casinos on the iconic 'Sin City' Strip.
The crowd chants USA as Former President Donald Trump makes an appearance at UFC 264 in Las Vegas. pic.twitter.com/SArqg6vv4N— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) July 11, 2021
Trump's presence had already been confirmed in the build-up to the card alongside celebrities including pop star Justin Bieber, actress Megan Fox and comedian Dave Chappelle.
It should come as no great shock either, considering the tycoon is a close ally of his UFC counterpart Dana White, and has been backed by welterweight title challengers including Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington.
"I met him outside and walked in with him," White said at the post-event press conference.
"He’s a fight fan, here to see the fights tonight, that’s it. I’ve been friends with this guy for years, it was just two friends who are fight fans watching a fight.”
Donald Trump stands out in the crowd at UFC 264 with his trademark red tie. pic.twitter.com/vOE03mxDrQ— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) July 11, 2021
It has been pointed out that Trump's reception was a lot warmer than that he received in liberal New York in 2019.
At a UFC show held at Madison Square Garden, he was jeered heavily with the trip reportedly costing US taxpayers $250,000 due to the short notice the Secret Service had to provide personnel.
Trump's visit to the gambling capital was apparently a brief one too, as he is set to speak at the CPAC conference in Dallas, Texas, later on Sunday.
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