Kavanagh appears on MMA Live with Helwani to talk about UFC 205. On McGregor’s baby announcement.
People always roll their eyes when I say this, but Conor is an extremely private person. Of course he has the promotion side of fights. But [try to] find pictures of him when there’s no fights going on. He doesn’t really go out. He doesn’t have a massive friend circle. Most of the time it’s just him and Dee together.
Coach Kavanagh talks about McGregor’s preparation in the lead up to UFC 205. On Alvarez’s chances:
A few knocks and bruises can absolutely be expected at the end of a tough training camp. But no injuries..Any takedown Eddie gets he’s going to have to fight tooth and nail for. And even if he does get a takedown, it’s gonna be an exhausting process. And if even if you do get [Conor] down, he’s very, very difficult to hold down. And if you are holding him down you’re gonna be eating big elbows, submission attempts. He’s gonna be talking, reminding him how tiring it’s getting. He’s a tough guy for anyone.
On the weight class:
It’s like the Goldilocks porridge — a little bit too hot, a little bit too cold, and just right…Conor can pretty much diet to 55. But getting 55 to 45, you look at his body and think, ‘Where can I get 10 pounds off?’…He’s gonna be shredded I’m sure but not gaunt. It really is the Goldilocks McGregor fight.
The Mac Lifereleases a video interview with Roddy and Kavanagh. Roddy:
At 70 kilos (155 pounds) [McGregor] is at the best weight that suits his body”, Roddy explains. “For me just working on the pads with him, he just seems a lot sharper, a lot faster. I don’t feel like he’s lost any power and he’s gained a bit of speed. This is the weight he should fight at and should have always fought at. I think we’re going to see the best Conor.
Routine, routine, routine. This was always my way. Conor is more flowy and artistic and does things as he feels is the right time to do them but he has seen the benefit of it as well. For the last few months now, I could tell you six weeks in advance what today’s session was going to be. It’s paid dividends. It did in the last fight and we’ve continued it on to this one.
Exclusive interview with John Kavanagh and Owen Roddy before UFC 205: The Mac Life
Kavanagh says McGregor’s UFC 202 training not only used training partners capable of mimicking Diaz inside the cage on MMA sparring day, they also attempted to mimic fight day conditions in every other possible way.
We made sure that we did a lot of very accurate fight simulations. On our MMA sparring day, we really treated it the exact same as fight day. What he was going to eat on fight day, how he was going to rest – we mimicked it perfectly. We left the house at the same time he was going to leave the house for fight day. One of the guys that we brought in as a sparring partner, they didn’t hang out together, they didn’t become friends, they didn’t chat to each other. And when they would go into the gym, they would get changed in a different room and they wouldn’t talk to each other until they were actually sparring. And then, as sort of a stroke of luck, this particular guy we got, he actually liked to do some shit-talking.
Coach John Kavanagh on Conor McGregor at UFC 202 | Mentality of Combat Sports
In his interview on MMA Hour, Kavanagh talks about the effect of McGregor’s training camp.
I think the first round of the fight was all Conor. I think there is the technical superiority there. I don’t think that will have changed with 18 weeks training. I don’t think Nate will have been able to catch up on that. Clearly the way the contest ended, there was a substantial conditioning difference between the two. That’s what we have changed. Skill wise, it takes maybe ten years, the 10,000 hour rule, to get to a mastery level in something. But conditioning wise, 18 weeks is a lifetime… So I think he is the somewhat perfect MMA fighter now.
On McGregor’s mood:
I have never seen him like this six days out from a fight. Six days out from a fight is normally…you got to creep around the house a bit because the weight cut’s in, he’s tired of training at this stage and all the media obligations. Where we didn’t have to do all that much this time, there is no weight to be cut, training went perfect. He is like a kid on Christmas Eve.
McGregor and Kavanagh talk about the fighter’s training program in a profile in the Irish Examiner. McGregor starts training at 1pm, with intense workout for over an hour. After lunch he spars with partners brought over from all around the world, finishing with more cardio in the evening. McGregor:
[For UFC 196] I was waking up late and training late, showing up here at maybe 2pm and still being here till one in the morning. Like a buzzing light. Buzzzz. I was never fully on and I was never off. I was just there. That’s not what this game is about. You need to be…[clicks fingers]…On.
Kavanagh admits he did not pay enough attention to McGregor’s training, and that the Diaz loss has helped them focus.
After the Aldo fight, I’ll admit in terms of training Conor, my foot went off the pedal altogether. I got caught up with stuff in the gym…It was supposed to be only for a week or two but it turned into six or seven and then I realised ‘We’re just two weeks out from this and I’ve barely done a session with Conor.’ Now it’s every day. We’re here at 1pm. Sharp…The only reason it didn’t happen for Conor in round two was because he got tired. That’s one thing that will not happen in this contest…The Conor that’s going out there on August 20 is an absolutely new model. This is Conor 3.0 compared to what went up against Diaz in March. And I’ve said it to Conor, whenever he’s fought his next few fights and he calls it a day, we will look at the first Diaz fight as the absolute most positive thing that ever happened to us because it taught us so much.
At Win or Learn – An Evening with John Kavanagh, McGregor talks about UFC 196 and 202.
To see the way that last fight went, I can’t live with it…The last fight, mid-round, I wasn’t listening, I wasn’t paying attention. That was one of the errors I made…I was a little bit heavy around the mid-section, I was over-trained and it came back and bit me in the ass…I’m looking forward to the rematch; to going back out and showing what we have learned…I’m working my nuts off for this rematch. Believe me on that. I’m feeling very confident that I’ll go in and toy with this man. He was one or two shots from being done.
During a talk with MMA Underground, Kavanagh says he thinks McGregor-Mayweather will happen.
It puts it on hold. I think that contest will happen eventually but it’s on hold for now. I’d be very surprised if it doesn’t at some stage. I think it’s a bigger fight; I think there’s a lot of intrigue about it. I could be 100% wrong. Right now we’re focusing on August 20th. We have an important rematch – a mixed martial arts fight – but if in time that fight was to be announced it would not surprise me and I think it would be an interesting one.
It’s hard to beat Floyd with boxing because he seems to be almost perfect in terms of how defensive he is. I think if you’re a classically trained boxer you’re gonna lose to Floyd because he just seems to make everybody look quite ordinary. But maybe somebody who doesn’t strike like a boxer might be a new look for him. Maybe the odd sly knee and leg kick as well. [Laughs.] You get two warnings. [Laughs.]
John Kavanagh Exclusive ahead of June 24th Release of his New Book "Win Or Learn"
Kavanagh says he and McGregor have been watching the featherweight division and that what happens next will depend on how the next couple months play out
The short answer is I don’t know [if Conor will return to 145 pounds]. I’m very intrigued to see the Aldo and Edgar fight. I hope Aldo is fully recovered from the bad knockout. I thought (Chad) Mendes went back in there really quick after the knockout against Conor. People don’t realize the damage it does — it takes a long time to recover, and I think Mendes went down quicker in that fight because of that. Maybe if he’d let himself rest a bit more he might have had more fight for Edgar. I hope that’s not the case for Aldo, (I hope) we get to see a solid version of Aldo and a new kind of improved Edgar, and see what different from the first fight. So yea, let’s see that, and assess after the rematch. It’s kind of those two names and (Max) Holloway kind of in the mix, so it’s an interesting time….I thought Holloway looked fantastic the other night [at UFC 199]. I’ve said it ever since Conor fought Max, I had him as the second best 145er in the division.
John Kavanagh Exclusive ahead of June 24th Release of his New Book "Win Or Learn"
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