At an event at the Star Casino in Sydney, Kavanagh explains how McGregor can beat Woodley.
I’d fancy [Conor] in there with Woodley. He’s just another wrestler with an overhand right, and that’s the type Conor grew up knocking out. So I wouldn’t see a massive challenge in that. I would like to see Gunni get that belt. Gunnar Nelson will be the next SBG world champion.
Woodley says the McGregor-Mayweather fight will be good for the UFC.
I think it’s a phenomenal thing for the UFC. It’s a phenomenal thing for combat sports. Anytime you can bring boxing and MMA together in common sports, I think it’s a great opportunity. These guys are the top of the top in their divisions. I think this fight on paper may not be the most stylistic matchup but in general, I think it’s a great fight. It’s going to bring in a lot of money. We’re fighting over millions of dollars. These guys are going into the tens of millions of dollars and Floyd’s going into the hundreds of millions,” Woodley said. “So I think it’s a fight that needs to take place.
Woodley says McGregor would rather lose to Floyd Mayweather than face fighters in the UFC.
We know Conor don’t want it [a fight with me]. Conor ain’t nothing. Conor is now in a position where he would have had to fight somebody real. He would have had to fight me, Tony Ferguson or Khabib. He knows we’re not a good matchup for him, we’re not going to fall into his antics, him talking crap, it’s not going to bother us. He knew he had to make a choice. His best option is to get the Floyd fight, take the L, walk away in the wind with $70 million and remain a legend in MMA.
White says that rather than racism,Woodley is his own enemy.
The thing is with Tyron, first of all; he’s a smart guy. He’s a good looking kid. He’s explosive. He’s got knockout power; but he’s a bit of a drama queen. … When a fight is made — and Conor McGregor is a perfect example — Conor McGregor has that fight anybody, anywhere attitude, but doesn’t just have the attitude, he lives it. I’ve stood in front of him [with] ten days notice and he doesn’t care. He doesn’t care. If Tyron Woodley had that attitude, Tyron Woodley would be a massive star. Massive star. But he does these things where he literally [go] on Instagram when he knows who he’s fighting next and say ‘I’m not fighting him, I don’t wanna fight him, I think I wanna fight this guy or that guy’. And that’s not what people want to hear…“People don’t want to hear that, and then what he does then, is he’ll start fighting an arguing with people on social media. Then he wonders why when he shows up at a press conference the whole crowds booing him. They’re not booing him because he’s black, there’s tonnes of black guys fighting in the UFC.
Woodley says he has not been treated as well as other fighters because he is African-American.
People don’t like to hear it, but it’s the culture of our sport. We’re dealing with a different set of rules…UFC fans in general go through niches, genres of people. This is the genre where they want to see a clean-cut guy like [Thompson], doing razzle-dazzle, super flashy…The second I bring up race in the sport, I’m immediately race-baiting. But I can point out clear facts, where no other champion has been treated like me.
Let’s put the cards on the table, real is real. If I was a different complexion, I think people and fans would treat me a different way…I’m by far the worst-treated champion in the history of the UFC.
Thompson and Woodley play a game of charades on UFC on Fox.
Woodley says McGregor can survive in the ring against Mayweather.
I think it is going to happen this year. I have very strong insights that it will happen.Conor is from a karate background; he’s a striker by nature. He could probably last a couple of rounds… He will lose. He will lose convincingly but he could last at least six rounds. “Conor has been known to take some crazy punches with 4-ounce gloves on. If you hit him with 8-ounce gloves on, it’s a different thing.
Woodley says he will fight Thompson at UFC 209 on March 4:
He got under my skin so much, that you know what. I’m just gonna go ahead and fight this dude. Like straight up. He got under my skin that bad, that I don’t even care about the ration, the money and what fight makes most sense. You need to be careful what you ask for. Wonderboy, you want it? Come get it. You wanna get done worse than you did the last time? Like, some people gotta be real careful. You can lit weights, you can gain weight, it don’t matter. You’re not going to make up for twenty years of wrestling, you’re not going to make up for sheer athleticism, power, conditioning and hunger. Those things are just in you.
To me, he’s just not acting like a champion. It was a draw. He even said that we have unfinished business, but it seems like he’s just calling out everybody else but me. He’s called out Georges St-Pierre, Nick Diaz, Demian Maia. He’s even gone to the point where he wanted to go up a weight class to fight Bisping. It’s like the bully in the room and he’s looking for everybody else who he probably knows aren’t going to fight him.
Bisping shares a video of him debating Woodley over a potential fight, before agreeing on a catchweight fight at 180-pounds perhaps taking place in April or May next year. The verbal agreement isn’t necessarily official, as it’s up to the UFC to book their fighters.
TW: We’re fighting!
MB: Bro, really?
TW: What weight?
MB: Whatever weight you wanna do.
TW: 180. What do you weigh?
MB: More than you little guy.
TW: I weigh 200
MB: How about 210?
TW: You hear that? 180 me and Bisping
MB: 180. But then no belts on the line
TW: No belts f-ck that!
MB: Superfight for the f-ckin’ <inaudible>
TW: What month?
TW: I’m 100% serious
Abdelaziz, Khabib Nurmagomedov’s manager, says that McGregor’s next fight will be against Woodley at welterweight (170 pounds). He also says Dana White’s comments about McGregor being “too small” to fight at that weight are part of a negotiating strategy.
Let me make a prediction: McGregor’s next fight is going to be Tyron Woodley for the welterweight title. This is the fight that’s going to happen. Every sign is this is going to happen.
Woodley says McGregor’s backstage confrontation with him at UFC 205 brought out memories of his hometown of Ferguson.
When he got in my face and I looked at him I said, ‘what’s up?’ At that moment he realized I ain’t that dude. I’m really about that life. I’m really from that life. My family is from that life. I’m actually one of the sharper tools in the box that haven’t been in the streets like that but I have family members, close loved ones, that that’s all they know. So I’ve been around that a lot and I try not to take myself back to those dark areas, I try to stay sophisticated, stay professional but a few people can take you out of that element and bring that Ferguson back out of you and he almost did it.
And urges McGregor to bring it on:
if Conor want it he can get it. He knows how to get in touch with Dana [White], he knows how to get the contract set, and he really don’t want to fight. I’m not saying he should want to fight because I’m not a little dude. I ain’t Nate Diaz. Nate Diaz is not a welterweight. He did not do well at welterweight because he was undersized and these dudes are real gorillas in this weight class…When you come up to this weight brother, it’s real power, it’s real people that will put real hands on you, that’ll put you down to the canvas and you will not get up unless I let you up.
Woodley starts a social media campaign asking McGregor fans to hashtag their posts with #AskKenny or #AskTyron if they want to see a McGregor-Woodley fight.
Woodley says McGregor is not bluffing about boxing.
I don’t know if it’s a punk thing. If it’s something he’s doing, y’know [trying to] show the UFC that he’s the boss. He just ‘relinquished’ his featherweight title, which I don’t think he wanted two belts just to give one up. But, I don’t know what his motives are. For the fans and people who are thinking that this is a bluff, it’s not really a bluff. If Conor decided that ‘I wanna walk and take this $100 million fight with Floyd Mayweather’, no-one, including myself could knock him for doing that. Or [saying] ‘ah, he’s scared to fight’. That’s not really anything…I think [A fight with Mayweather] can be way more interesting than people realise. I can’t just see Floyd Mayweather going out there and just knocking Conor out in the first couple rounds. Conor McGregor, man, he does have some really good timing. If you watch him in his fights, and slow it down a few times. He’s slipping inside, outside. That four piece he hit Eddie Alvarez with, that was one of the slickest combinations I’ve seen in a very long time.
Kavanagh says McGregor could beat Woodley:
…I don’t see what other people are saying, ‘There’s no way Conor can touch this guy.’ There is. No one is perfect. There’s openings there. Of course, he’s a bigger man, he’s got more power and you’ve gotta be super careful. But Conor trains with big guys like this…He’s not enormous. He’s not some Goliath man. He’s a little bit bigger. Conor would have reach on him, he would have technique on him in the striking, for sure. He’d have to of course deal with that power. … I certainly don’t in my head go, ‘Oh my God, no. We couldn’t possibly beat him.’ It’s a doable fight.
McGregor’s striking coach says he would like to see him fight for a third belt, preferring Woodley or Diaz over Nurmagomedov. Roddy:
Maybe [Tyron] Woodley,. For me, for him to go up and compete for a third belt [welterweight], maybe Woodley. [Nate] Diaz again is another great one. I think it’s what fans would want to see. They want to see something special again, the Diaz fight again is special. The Woodley fight is special…You can’t really doubt Khabib at this stage. He’s a phenomenal grappler and a phenomenal wrestler. But I don’t know whether the excitement is there, you know? Obviously for Conor it’s about the pay-per-views. It’s about the money. Whether Khabib will hit the pay-per-views for him I just don’t know…He poses a different threat so it would be good to sort of work out what strikes are going to land on him. He can be hit as well, I will say that. He got hit a bit in his last fight.
Thompson says he is not worried about a rematch with Woodley, and that McGregor is too small to fight at 170 pounds.
Not at all (worried), man. To be honest with you, I think the UFC knows that I deserve that title shot, that I deserve that rematch. And you know what, I think that Conor McGregor’s gotta defend the 145 and the 155 title and I just think he’s too small for the 170 division. I mean, he’s walking around right at 170, maybe a little bit less. I don’t think it would be a good division for him to step up to…I think it would be a good fight no matter what. I mean, he is one of the best fighters out there and that’s what we’re out to do. We’re out to fight the best fighters in whatever division, whoever steps up…He’s already out there talking trash to Tyron and doing his thing, doing what Conor McGregor does…People show up just to see him just act nuts. Hats off to that guy, he’s a very intelligent, very smart guy.
Woodley talks about the pair of incidents he had with McGregor at UFC 205.
I think he was trying to bait me. But the hook was taken and he didn’t do nothing with it…Before the video came out. The one he was upset about. Even though he did the shit. Don’t do it and then be mad that somebody video taped it. Anyway, even before my video came out that showed where he faked tossing the chair. Before that video came out, at the press conference he said ‘I’ll take all of those belts over there!’. So I said ‘What belts?’. And then he was quiet and didn’t say much. Never once would he mention my belt. He never would mention fighting for the welterweight title. He just danced around the subject. He never once would say ‘I will fight Tyron Woodley’. Or ‘I will take his belt’. He started planting those seeds later. I saw him doing it and was like ‘Hell yeah! I’ll plant those seeds with you.
When asked by a fan on Twitter, Jones says McGregor can beat Woodley.
At the post UFC 205 press conference Woodley talks about fighting McGregor.
I’m mean to be straight honest. Conor McGregor is a guy that fought at 145, ever in his life. I haven’t weighed 145 since my sophomore year in high school. He’s tall, got long arms, got good timing, and can place good punches. I’m 100% positive he’s not been hit with the shots I’ll hit him with. I just don’t think Conor understands the pressure I can put on him, the power I can put on him, and all the different attacks. I think it’s good for media. If he wants to fight, we can sign it right now. I just don’t think it’s a good idea for him to fight me.
McGregor and Woodley get into a Twitter spat where McGregor calls Woodley a bitch multiple times.
McGregor confronts Woodley backstage after the
You’re like a woman with that phone. F-ckin’ bitch.
When Woodley enters the official weigh in room, he says something to McGregor, causing the Irishman to stare him down for several seconds.
UFC releases Episode 5 of UFC 205 Embedded. Woodley visits the New York Giants at work, meeting Eli Manning and Odell Beckham, Jr. among others. Alvarez suits up for the UFC 205 press conference at Madison Square Garden, where McGregor arrives late. The video shows more detail of the ‘chair incident’. The action moves to backstage where Jedrzejczyk lambasts opponent Karolina Kowalkiewicz, who responds with a finger. Alvarez:
Take that stupid ass coat off.
In the latest episode of UFC Embedded, McGregor talks to fans, including a policewoman, checks out his luxury ride and takes it on a high-end shopping trip Thompson packs for his trip as opponent Woodley gets out the vote, and Alvarez heads to Connecticut for a day of media at ESPN.
Woodley says McGregor is too smart to take a fight with him at Welterweight, assuming they are both victorious at UFC 205.
Well first off I think Conor is a smart individual and he knows that fighting me is not going to be good for his health. I just do not really see him wanting that fight…Even if he loses to Eddie it is not all bad. With his two bouts with Diaz, he will have now fought three times in a row outside the division and he still holds the belt. So he is a smart business guy and so I do not think he is going to want to come up and fight a guy who is going to outsize him. Being 170 and fighting 170 is two different things. I walk around at 200. Giving up that 30-pounds…Plus he is not going to have a boxing advantage. He is definitely not going to have a wrestling advantage. He is definitely not going to have a strength advantage. And it would be a lopsided display of power. I just really do not think there is any advantage to him having that fight with me. I will not be discouraged by his antics or him talking crap..But if we both get through our fights with victories and he wants to fight me then by all means. Sign me up now. I would actually feel bad about beating Conor McGregor. Like man, I just beat a guy who is 145. Granted, I would make a truck load of money. But it is not a situation that I would walk around with my chest pumped out afterward.