UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor has addressed the furore surrounding his use of a homophobic slur at UFC Fight Night 118 in Poland.
McGregor, who lost a multi-million dollar boxing bout against Floyd Mayweather last month, was filmed using the word "f****t" after his sparring partner Artem Lobov lost a unanimous decision to Andre Fili in Poland on October 21.
Speaking on Irish television program The Late Late Show, McGregor apologised for his use of the slur, but insisted his comments were 'blown out' of proportion.
"I have to put my hands up there," the 29-year-old said.
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"I was watching a fighter, a sparring partner, a training partner, a friend, a brother of mine who has given his health, his body health, his brain health, everything to help me prepare for fights to give my brain health and my body health to entertain the public.
"That’s the fighter I was going to watch and support. I witnessed him lose a fight, and a potential career-ending fight, in a manner where the opponent was stalling and running away and I was upset.
"I was whispering in his ear and I was speaking on that and I said what I said.
"I meant no disrespect to nobody of the LGBT community. I didn’t mean no disrespect. You’d swear I was screaming at two people of the same sex kissing."
The UFC superstar also touched on the fact he publicly backed the 'yes' vote during Ireland's same-sex marriage debate.
"I campaigned, when we were trying to get same sex marriage legalised, I was campaigning for that," he said.
"It is another one where things just get blown out and they love to just, any chance they get they love to throw me under the bus.
"It is what it is. I’ll just say sorry for what I said and that’s it and try to move on from it."
Watch McGregor's comments in the video at the top of the page.
McGregor originally apologised for the remarks to Reuters.
"I'm human, I slip up, I say stupid things every damn day. All I can (do) is hold my hand up and apologise if anyone was offended," McGregor told Reuters in an interview in his hometown of Dublin.
"The word used to describe that opponent (Fili) was incorrect and very offensive and I can apologise for that."
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