Friday was not a good night to be affiliated with the Miami Heat.
The team got beaten handily for the second straight game at home by the Nuggets to fall behind 3-1 in the NBA Finals as the series shifts back to Denver for Game 5. During that loss, the team’s mascot Burnie decided it’d be fun to do a bit at midcourt with Conor McGregor, who was sitting courtside for the game.
Burnie came out with big boxing gloves to “fight” McGregor, with the former UFC champ scoring a one punch knockout (and then one more on the ground for good measure).
Conor McGregor knocked out the Miami Heat mascot 😭 pic.twitter.com/86RutVZ9d9
— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) June 10, 2023
That punch was apparently a bit more than Burnie had bargained for, as the Athletic reported on Saturday that the man in the costume had to go to the hospital to get checked out and get some pain medication before being discharged — with Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald confirming.
Can confirm, as @sam_amick reported, that the man in the Heat's Burnie mascot had to go to ER after being injured by former UFC champ Conor McGregor in an on-court bit. He saw a doctor and is now home. Splendid.
— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) June 10, 2023
The story notes he is doing well now, which is good, and I feel like the lesson here is to never ask a professional fighter to punch you for a bit, even if you’re in a large, cushioned outfit. Fighters tend to not be the best at pulling punches, and the result might be some injury added to insult.