There are few tickets more expensive than seats ringside for the biggest boxing match of the year.
Las Vegas and boxing have a tendency to bring in a parade of celebrities and high-rollers for the weekend of a fight, and the combination of scarcity and high price tags mean casual fans have little chance of getting as close to the action as the rich and famous.
However, on Saturday night, one Conor McGregor fan would not be denied his opportunity to see his favourite fighter up close on the biggest stage of his career.
As the Sun’s James Beal first reported, Oliver Regis, a 32-year-old British bartender, bluffed his way from his $US2,500 seat at the top of the T-Mobile Arena all the way down to $US25,000 floor seats, rubbing elbows with a slew of celebrities on the way and getting the view of his life for the fight.
Regis is a huge McGregor fan, complete with a tattoo of the Irish fighter on his leg, but when he saw Floyd Mayweather’s security team making a move toward the ring, he did his best to bluff and look like he was a part of the posse. His plan worked, and Regis was able to pass by floor security without a glance at his ticket, finding himself down in a third row seat for the final fight before the main event.
Regis was expectedly pleased with his effort. “I did feel a bit cheeky — but this was a once-in-a-lifetime chance. I could not believe it worked. There were quite a few empty seats,” he told the Sun. “I sat down in the third row and Mike Tyson then sat down behind me. LeBron James was on my row and I could see Leonardo DiCaprio.”
From there, in true Las Vegas fashion, Regis pushed his luck, and began asking the celebs around him for selfies, and by the end of the night, he had accrued quite a collection, including Gerard Butler, Jeremy Piven, Jennifer Lopez, Jamie Foxx, and Chris Hemsworth.
Ahead of the main event the arena continued to fill, and Regis stayed mingling, keeping an eye out for more open seats that might be a bit less conspicuous. Before the first bell rang, he settled into a seat in the tenth row and took in the fight.
“My friends started texting me saying they had seen me on TV,” Regis said. “It was very surreal, but it was the biggest fight in history!”
While the fight didn’t go the way he had hoped, Regis had himself a Vegas night that most can only dream of.
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