Conor McGregor has been named as the RTÉ Sportsperson of the Year for 2016, at the RTÉ Sport Awards, in association with Sport Ireland.
It completes a stellar year for the Irish UFC fighter after he became the first man in the history of the organisation to concurrently hold two UFC titles at different weights.
McGregor defeated Eddie Alvarez via a second round knockout in November to claim the UFC lightweight championship, adding it to his featherweight title.
The Sportsperson of the Year award was voted for online and by text by the public, and McGregor overcame 11 other nominees, including Carl Frampton and Daryl Horgan to win.
Conor McGregor talks to Clare McNamara after a year which he call the 'culmination of his life's work'. https://t.co/0AY8QPqGyu— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) December 17, 2016
Reflecting on a hectic year, McGregor said: "It’s good to be on top, it’s good to be two-weight world champion. It’s been an amazing year, a learning year for me, a rollercoaster of a year with many ups and many downs.
“I’m happy now, I came out strong at the end of it and here I am standing tall.”
For McGregor the highlight of 2016 was unquestionably his victory over Alvarez, and fight which he says was the culmination of his life’s work.
“That was the culmination of 28-years of hard work,” he insisted. “That night was my entire’s life’s work, every single session, every single hour of training I put in was for that moment.
“It was an unbelievable moment for myself, my team, everyone who has come up with me on this journey. It was an amazing night for us all.
McGregor also added further fuel to speculation that he could eventually face boxing champion Floyd Mayweather.
The Dubliner has been issued a boxing license in California and has in the past claimed that he wants to take on the unbeaten welterweight.
"I’ve got the boxing licence. His last pay-per-view was 350,000 buys. The fight was a flop, it was a dud. His last two fights have been duds.
"I certainly don’t need him.
"Of course the Floyd fight is the fight the public want to see, but we’ll see. These things take time."
The Dubliner is now looking forward to 2017, when he is due to become a father for the first time.
McGregor had been expected to take a prolonged break from fighting but claimed that he may not be away for as long as had initially been feared.
"As far as I break, I don’t know,” he said. “I know Dana [White] has been on record, he’s saying ‘10 months, he’s taking 10 months’, I don’t know.
"Originally I thought the baby was being born in March and then it was May so maybe I could get in another [fight].
"I just don’t know. I’m weighing up my options."
McGregor was uncharacteristically humble when accepting his award. "Thank you so much to the fans for voting for me for RTÉ's Sports Person of the Year," he said from Los Angeles.
"I'm extremely grateful and extremely blessed to have the support of my home country.
"Thank you RTÉ as well. I'm sorry I couldn't make the awards ceremony. You know I love to stick on a good suit and roll into these awards ceremonies and collect an award so I'm a little bit upset about that.
"Thank you RTÉ. Thank you to the fans. Thanks so much. It's been a hell of a year and I look forward to 2017."