Conor McGregor exposed: Bombshell, tell-all book reveals true creator of Proper 12 whiskey
Former two-division UFC champion Conor McGregor was considering getting into the vodka business in Iceland, based on advice (and existing success) from European strongman Hafthor Julius Bjornsson. But that didn’t make much sense to his ‘Notorious’ bandmate Artem Lobov, who suggested McGregor stick to his roots and pursue Irish whiskey, a subject he was all too familiar with. after his graduate studies.
In fact, “The Russian Hammer” plans to publish a tell-all book that delves into the creation of Proper 12 Whisky, which McGregor eventually sold for $600 million.
“The selling point of my book will be the story of Proper 12 whiskey. A few people know this, but it was actually my idea. It was me who came up with the idea to make a whiskey for Conor,” said Lobov said in an interview with talkSPORT “After Diaz’s second fight, me and Conor were in the gym talking one day and he said to me, ‘Artem, Thor, ‘The Mountain’ from Game of Thrones – I spoke to him, and he offered me [the chance] make my own vodka. He said he was doing one in Iceland and now he’s offering me the chance to do one too. Sounds like a good deal, what do you think?
Lobov, of Russian descent, resided in Dublin and trained with McGregor at SBG Ireland.
“I told him before you even looked any further, ‘here’s what I know about Irish whiskey.’ I told him about my college pitch,” Lobov continued. “I told him about the dominance of Irish whiskey and all that. He was like, ‘Go away and see what market you can conclude” and I continued on my way. Luckily for me, when I was studying at university, I worked at the bar of the Radisson hotel and I had a friend who worked at the bar with me. He put me in touch with a gentleman by the name of Niall from Classic Drinks, one of Ireland’s leading drinks distribution companies Niall was kind enough to meet me, at the Radisson actually, and he was very generous with his information .
At the time, Lobov (13-15-1, 1 NC) was competing in the UFC featherweight division.
“Once I got that information, I moved on and met all the different whiskey distilleries,” Lobov said. “I called some and met some in person. I did my research and got a great deal. Once the deal was ready, I went to Conor and said, ‘Conor, I have the deal ready for you. This is going to be a billion dollar deal, no mess here. I don’t know if he took me seriously or not at the time with the billion dollars. I introduced Audie [Attar] and the rest of the paradigm [Sports Management] team on my terms and all the people I was already working with, and then we got started. We kept working on it and as you can see it was a huge success. I’m really happy to see this and I’m really happy to be a part of it.
Here is the “official” story from the Proper 12 website:
Proper No. Twelve pays tribute to our founder, Conor Mcgregor’s, Crumlin’s hometown, Dublin 12 and their shared spirit of brotherhood, loyalty and hard work.
Then from the Proper 12 “Our story” page:
Our founder, Conor McGregor, and his team searched for a place and people who shared the same passion for Ireland and its whisky. He found it in the oldest whiskey distillery on the island of Ireland and, together with his master distiller, created a unique and special blend.
OUR FOUNDER & MASTER DISTILLATOR
After much trial and error, they worked together to create a blend of sweet Irish cereals and single malt Irish whiskey. The result, a soft and balanced whiskey with notes of vanilla, honeyed sweetness and toasted wood.
Lobov claims McGregor offered him a million dollars to get ‘Notorious’ on the Proper 12 path, but he turned it down, because the former ‘champ champ’ never took (or received) money from Lobov during their respective combat camps. “The Russian Hammer” also plans to disclose its financial stake in the company once its book is completed.
A release date has yet to be determined.