Wallace talks about training with McGregor, taking the place of Nate Diaz in sparring sessions.
I couldn’t believe it when I heard at the time. I thought he [Conor McGregor] was joking, then I rang Mick [Michael Conlan] straight away and asked him if he was winding me up. But when I found out it wasn’t a joke I replied back to tell him I’d be delighted to go…We mainly did two sessions a day, it was well structured and I was mainly used on the boxing days…I’m a lot sharper than Diaz, it’s plain to be seen. He’s slow and sluggish but it’s his fitness and toughness that wins him a lot of his fights. But I watched a lot of his footage, his big long one-two and a kind of slap hook catching as the opponent comes in. I tried to mimic him the best I could to help McGregor deal with it…[Conor] couldn’t thank us enough for the work that we had done. Because when people were watching the fight, it was more like a boxing match rather than MMA.
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
Bisping says that McGregor cannot beat Alvarez at 155 pounds, disagreeing with John Kavanagh, who has said McGregor would beat Alvarez inside two rounds.
I think looking at that last fight, he does not want to fight Eddie Alvarez at 155. I think Alvarez kills him man. He’ll just take him down and destroy him. I’m not saying that to be mean, I just think stylistically…I like Conor. Conor is incredible, he’s done amazing things for this sport. He’s brought so many eyes on to it, he’s making so much money and he’s exciting as hell. He brings excitement.
McGregor is ranked second in the LA Times ranking of the top ten power rankings. Daniel Cormier takes the top spot.
McGregor’s laser-focused ability to win a fight 25 pounds above his normal weight class moves him closer to the top of The Times’ MMA power rankings…After defeating Nate Diaz, McGregor left the arena wanting his next fight to be his own choice. He’s hoping to become the UFC’s first-ever simultaneous two-belt champion, so lightweight champ Eddie Alvarez seems his favored opponent.
Dalby talks about McGregor’s training and recovery.
The basic problem with Conor is that he is a man obsessed. If he is left to his own devices, he will self-destruct. He will train himself into oblivion. And that’s what he had been doing in the past. He had been over-training to the point that he would make himself ill and then he would take time off…The end justifies it all. The fact is, he went a hard, hard five rounds and he won at the end of the five rounds…The man is capable of going a hard 29 minutes. His fitness level is exceptional now. You can see how quickly he can recover in the one minute between rounds, he comes back up fresh again [at the beginning of each new round]…He can be in peak form for November. There are a lot of variables there. I mean it’s up to what Dana White wants him to do, it’s up to whether any of the other contenders want the fight. But from a medical standpoint, there is absolutely no reason why he can’t fight in November. It’s more down to the logistics of it, from the UFC and the other fighters, nothing to do with his health or conditioning…I would like to see him fight [Jose] Aldo. There is some unfinished business that’s going on there.
Alvarez says he is open to meeting McGregor is the boxing ring, and criticises his comments about boxers.
I’ve been fighting the best since I was 23, since a very young age, that’s the last thing he could ever speak about me or say about me, but I understand, there’s people out there that like to talk nonsense and stupidity. If he wants to try out boxing, then anytime he wants. If he wants to come over to this side of the world and try boxing, anytime he wants, to see that it’s not as easy as he thinks,
Canelo to Mcgregor "If he wants to come to boxing im ready any day, its not as easy as he thinks"
Speaking to Sonnen on his podcast, Diaz says he doesn’t expect an immediate rematch.
I don’t know [what’s going on behind the scenes]. Remember last time they rushed to his house the next morning and said he was all obsessed or whatever? I was pretty crazy about it for a couple of days, but it’s whatever to me, you know? I won that fight and I’m not like jumping for joy already for round three. I think I beat him twice, so it’s 2-0 as far as I’m concerned. If they want to do it down the road, I don’t know – I’m not in a hurry. I believe they know too, because he’s got a smart coach on his hands. Him and his coach know what happened in the fight and they’re not stupid, so I think they are going to do what they can to return to his division and get onto a new stage.
In reply to a screenshot of an article where Kavanagh said he’d prefer for McGregor to go to 155lb and fight Alvarez for the lightweight championship, and in addition predicted a second round knockout, Henry says:
John Kavanagh, for a jiu-jitsu coach who can’t event teach his student Conor McGregor how to tie his belt and just got subbed quick you have a lot to say. PS give the proceeds of your book to the striking coach, he deserves it.
@SandhuMMA it won't. I'll focus on my fighter. I'm not a fighter and I'm not interested in headlines, I'm just a coach doing my best.
McGregor says he wants to buy a $2 million Richard Milles watch to add to his collection. Mille’s RM 056 costs $1.65 million, while the RM 56-02 Tourbillon Sapphire is $2 million.
I have a nice collection now. I have some Audemars. I have some Hublots. I have some Rolexes. I’ve been looking at Richard Milles. They’re a big purchase, the Richard Milles, so I’m not going to jump into it. I have the 50-year anniversary Rolex with the green face. It’s a beautiful piece. I was looking around to see if Lorenzo (UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta) has the same watch as me; I think he was copying me. Every time I see him, he has a new watch. I took a picture of the money-green Rolex and he said, ‘That’s my new favourite.’ And then at UFC 200 he shows up, ‘Hey look,’ and he had the same watch as me…Watches have always been something that just appeal to me. There’s something about having a really nice, quality watch on your wrist. Especially on my left wrist. When I feel the weight of it, I feel like… it takes you back to the caveman days, when you’d kill an animal and you would take something and put it around your neck as a symbol of what we have done. ‘We have conquered this.’ When I have won a big fight and collect a big check, I’ll purchase a beautiful watch and I’ll put it on my left hand. My left hand that I have cracked on my opponent. That hand has got me my fill. It feels like I’ve earned it.
Schaub says that McGregor should fight Mayweather next.
I don’t know if he’s favourite in any of those fights beside the Aldo one. I’ll tell you what to do and what he’s gonna do; you fight Floyd Mayweather for $30m, and you keep the UFC on ice because you’re the biggest star. From what I hear from inside sources – the only reason they didn’t fight before. . .they had a venue, the teams agreed to it, it was a money issue between them. I think it’s a huge opportunity for the UFC because you’re never gonna have another Conor McGregor.
The Fighter and the Kid – Episode 178: Benson Henderson
[Welterweight’s] where the money is. It would be amazing. Nick’s on a totally different level [of smack talking]. Nate’s a great fighter and a really tough guy, but even he said after the fight: ‘Shoutout to my brother – the best fighter in the world’. It would be a different experience in there. I want to see that more than anything in life. More than the Aurora Borealis, more than I want to go to Keck Observatory in Hawaii and see the Milky Way.
Overeem says both Mayweather and McGregor say they’re making as much as they say they are.
My answer to that, to Mayweather and to Conor, let me see some bank statements. You can talk, you can say it, you can put it out there in tweets, but let me see a bank statement that says UFC wired X amount of money, because it’s always going to be this way. People lie. It’s the 21st century. Social media is fake…I’m from Holland. In Holland, we like to dress up, we like to do our thing, we like to be cool. But we what we don’t like is to have stacks of cash on the table and the cars. To us, in our culture — and in that respect I’m very proud to be Dutch — that’s just attracting problems, attracting difficulty…I’ve always kind of followed my own path. I do what I think is right. That brings me happiness. If I’m going to do something because somebody else is doing it, I see that as fake. Again, you look at these other guys and they’re making the stacks of cash. Who was the first doing that? Muhammad Ali was doing that. So you’re copycatting another guy.
White says that McGregor will not be stripped of his 145-pound belt.
He’s not gonna get stripped. He’s gonna make a decision. He knows that the Nate Diaz fight isn’t the fight to make right now. He has to either defend his title or give it up and decide what he wants to do next.
He also says he is satisfied with McGregor-Diaz at UFC 202:
Think about this, Pacquiao-Mayweather, the build up for that fight, everything else. That fight didn’t live up to the hype and I think, more importantly, it left a really bad taste in people’s mouths. I don’t think that was the case for Diaz-McGregor . With the amount of people that were pulled in to watch that fight, everybody left satisfied and those are the kind of fights that make you want to come back and watch again.
Dos Anjos says the UFC 202 fight with McGregor and Diaz was ‘sloppy’. He also rates the fight as a win for Diaz.
Most of the people [celebrating the fight] watched MMA for the first time that day. I just saw two sloppy guys after the second round. The fight got so sloppy. I didn’t see the best fight of all time at all. The first round was good. Conor dropped Nate a couple times, but I didn’t think ‘what an exciting fight.’ I’ve seen better fights. [I don’t agree with the majority decision,] I scored it for Nate.
McGregor’s stylist says he orders 8 to 10 custom outfits every single time he goes out on a media tour, with each suit costing from $4,000 to $10,000.
From the suits down to the bow ties to the cuff links, he’s wearing David August. Every outfit I make for him takes 60 hours. He likes to wear his suits high and tight and really tailored, and his size changes all the time depending on his fights. So we’re always measuring him to make sure it fits exactly how he wants it. He’s such a style guy … he’s always been that way since the day I met him. He takes everything and makes it his own. It takes a guy with the right mind to pull off these extreme looks, and he does…We also have 2 or 3 extra outfits on hand in case anything happens to the outfits he’s supposed to wear for an event.
Kavanagh writes an article for The 42, where he talks about UFC 200 and what he would like McGregor to do next.
A lot of Conor’s fights have been short and relatively straightforward — which is great, because those wins are also to be enjoyed — but to see him go 25 minutes and face adversity, especially when so many people expected him to lose, it doesn’t get much better than that when you face those odds and come out with a victory…Where do we go from here? Well, we’re taking a short while to enjoy this victory, first of all, because it’s something we invested a lot in…I think it’s important to enjoy each victory, at least to a certain extent. Conor was actually back doing cardio work less than 48 hours after last weekend’s fight, so the training has continued…From a personal point of view, my own preference would be a lightweight title bout against reigning champion Eddie Alvarez next. Conor can make 145lbs to defend his featherweight belt, absolutely, but I just think 155lbs suits him best. Ultimately that’s Conor’s decision, not mine…If and when that fight is announced, I would be leaning towards a second-round knockout in Conor’s favour.
Kavanagh also says he welcomes the idea of a fight at Croke Park, in Dublin, and that non-US fights should be scheduled for Irish local time.
Bisping says McGregor would not be the star he is today without his influence.
No, why would Conor McGregor motivate me? I motivate Conor McGregor. When Conor McGregor was learning to stand to throw his first punch, I was kicking ass in the UFC. I’ve been at this a lot longer, so I motivate Conor McGregor. I inspire him…If it wasn’t for me, he wouldn’t exist. He would be working for minimum wage at the docks in Dublin…Put it like this, let’s have it right. Conor McGregor comes up to my waist and he weighs about the same as my little finger, so I’d snap his neck like a twig…But, he’s a cool guy. He’s a great fighter. He brings a lot of excitement. He’s been great for the sport. He brings a lot of eyes. Listen, he’s very watchable, he’s very sellable. He brings a lot of excitement and he delivers, I’m a fan.
[UFC 202] was basically, metaphorically, a nail in the coffin of boxing. And all these boxing fans were lining up saying, ‘You don’t get it! You don’t get it!’…UFC is talked about all the time…There are certain people who are purists. Newspapers and boxing still can still make money, but they are dead industries walking. UFC is now the water cooler sport in America when it comes to mano-a-mano fighting. It is taking over boxing. Occasionally, every three years, you will have a pay-per-view with boxing, and it pops. Every three years. UFC is every other weekend.
Diaz vs McGregor 2 was a 'nail in the coffin of boxing' – 'The Herd'
The Mac Lifereleases the final behind-the-scenes video in the series. McGregor watches teammate Artem Lobov’s victory at the Mac Mansion; receives his pre-fight instructions from referee John McCarthy; his walk-out before the bout; and the celebrations soon after. McGregor thanks his fans on Facebook.
Finally I want to thank the fans and all the supporters of The Mac Life as a whole. Every bit of support from friends and family has been noticed and much appreciated. Much love to you all. It was an honour to share all these moments with you throughout fight camp. All the intense work we put in was motivated by the continued support we received from YOU! Thank you all!
White says Rousey’s return will topple all UFC pay-per-view records set by McGregor, including his UFC 196 fight with Nate Diaz that raked in 1.5 million PPV buys and an estimated million-plus buys estimated for UFC 202.
I think that Ronda Rousey’s return will be the biggest pay-per-view we’ve ever done…If you had told me 15 years ago that women would be fighting in the UFC – and if you told me that women would be as technically sound as the men and the fights would be loved by millions of people all over the world and it’d be the hottest thing going on in the UFC – I would have never believed it.
Dana White: Ronda Rousey's return will be biggest televised UFC event – 'The Herd'
McGregor’s boxing coach releases video of McGregor from inside the SBG changing room, including McGregor’s walk out, his corner discussing the score before the official announcement, and McCarthy having an in-depth discussion with the featherweight champion moments before the fight. When White enters the dressing room after the fight and tells McGregor that ‘he’s gotta go to the hospital,’ McGregor replies:
I’ll have a shower, put on a suit, speak to the media and then I’ll go. I’m honestly grand.
UFC 202 Mc Gregor v Diaz – Coach Roddy Vlog 11.0 – Fight Night
McGregor is listed on the Nevada State Athletic Commissions injury suspension list with a “foot/ankle fracture” and must be cleared by an orthopedic doctor in order to fight again before Feb. 17, 2017, which seems likely. He will serve a minimum suspension of two months with the earliest he can return being Oct. 20, even if cleared by a doctor. Diaz has been given an injury suspension of one month for a severe cut above his left eye. Diaz cannot take contact until Sept. 11 nor fight until Sept. 20, though he won’t fight before then.
White says he does not want McGregor to fight again Diaz again in a “trilogy” fight. Instead he wants McGregor to defend his title against interim champ Aldo. He says McGregor has two options — either fight Aldo or surrender his title to him — or cut weight to 155 and fight Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight title.
The war was fun and super successful but I’m movin’ on.
Coach Kavanagh confirms to MMA Hour that McGregor did not injure his foot or leg during his fight with Diaz. McGregor landed 40 kicks to the leg of Diaz throughout the 25 minutes.
It’s a bad bruise and it’s very, very painful but there’s no damage. He never mentioned it [that he was injured] but I saw. If I remember correctly, in the third round there were one or two where Nate did turn his knee out and started checking them. And the range was a little bit wrong so he was kind of slapping with the foot and caught Nate’s knee. I just remember seeing that but I knew with adrenaline and with his mindset, it wasn’t going to make a difference. His shin could be clean snapped and he wasn’t going to stop for the five rounds. We discussed it as well. He knew he was going to bang up his left leg. That was going to be the sacrifice. It was going to be a bruised leg but victorious.
How long was I going back and forth with José? That must have been a two-year build-up. He pulled out, last-minute. I continued to fight someone else, then we rescheduled a two-year, ‘round the world deal with that boy. And then he stepped in and I beat him in 13 seconds. It’s hard for me to get excited about that, especially after his last performance. It was a decision. He didn’t go out and get it like I wanted him to get it. So, I don’t know.
White says a third meeting between McGregor and Diaz isn’t going to happen right away.
We’re definitely not doing this a third time right now. I don’t think there’s anybody that doesn’t want to see this fight again, but Conor’s either going to go defend his title or give his title up and then we’ll figure out where to go from there. Conor has to defend his title or make a decision to give it up or whatever he wants to do. I don’t know. I gotta sit down and see what’s next.
McGregor tellsMMA Hour that he is inspired by the UFC sale.
I was simply over the moon for them. To see the work they’ve put in, to see what they’ve done with it, I was inspired by it. Absolutely inspired by it. What was it, the biggest sports sale in history? A little sport that they laughed at. They laughed at this sport. Everyone ridiculed this sport. This sport wasn’t even a sport. And now all of a sudden, with their guidance, it’s the biggest f*cking sports franchise in the world. So I took inspiration from that. That is motivation right there…If you’re talking the greatest of all-time in the fight business, it’s that. To be able to get a turnover like that, get in, get rich, get out like that, and build that up to what that was, man, I was blown away when I saw that, and I’m blown away that I’m even on a name-to-name basis with that. These are the people who have mentored me in this game and I’m very proud of that, and I’ll be proud of that until the day that I die. I have been surrounded by great people in this business and I continue to be surrounded by great people in this business.
You’re damn right I want a piece of that pie. Let’s not get it twisted, I like pie too. So I’m coming for some of my pie also. Like I said, I think I played a nice role in that number. What was it? It was estimated at two billion at one stage before I came along. I remember when I first started here, it was a two-billion dollar franchise. I remember hearing that much. And now, since I came on, it’s four billion. And the year before it was sold is my year, numbers-wise. I played a nice role in that too, so the number motivated me.
McGregor gives a backstage interview. On what he said to Diaz.
You’re a f-ckin’ absolute warrior. Respect. We’ll do it again.
Will trilogy be his next fight?
Probably not. The belt situation is lingering. I’ve gotta talk about what’s next. I’m speaking to new people right now. There’s a lot of options. And some might not be this sport.
About Diaz comments that he was ‘running away’:
He’s a big boy. A big volume puncher. I had to get out of there, being the beats down and settle myself. But he’ll drop too. I was on my feet the whole time. I wasn’t wobbled or nothing… Fair play to him…The class was evident in the early rounds of that fight. His size and his durability came into it in the later rounds. But I’m the better fighter, it’s as simple as that.
McGregor says he did not break his foot, but that he has a shin injury.
My shin. I kicked his knee about 40 times and it’s hurting me. That’s it just my shin, everything else is good. My ankle was actually a bit banged up coming into the fight. We were practicing leg kicks in camp so it was a little bit swollen coming in but it’s the shin. I kicked his knee clean, I think it was in the first round and then I just kept kicking so I’m feeling it now, but other than that I am perfect.
I thought I won, at least three rounds to two. I didn’t even think that was a question. And they gave it to him. I’m not bitter, it’s all good. I got paid…He did a lot of running in that fight. He should have got a yellow card for that type of thing. I chased him round that thing. He was scared to engage. I feel like they should have taken points for that…To top it off I was injured coming into this fight. That ain’t some excuses. I hurt my knee about a month ago I wasn’t able to train jiu-jitsu for the last month. And then about two weeks after that I was sparring boxing and I really hurt my rib. That put me out of sparring. Not to make excuses, I got that all on videoed up. He should have finished me off. If I was fighting me I’d have took me clean out…I just stayed in one spot. He was running laps around me.
On the third fight at 155:
I’ve been at 155 my whole career! When Conor’s ready to do his thing again, no rush, take your time, go on vacation, or we can do it any time.
McGregor gives his first press conference after the fight.
It was not easy. It was a war. I’m happy it went that way. I got to show my heart in there.
On Diaz helping him up at the end.
He’s a class competitor. It’s intense in the build up and everything is real. If my team saw his team then something’s going down. We’ll regroup and gather up for another battle.
Is 170 done for you?
I wanna to get my abs back. I can’t get abs at this weight. Sometimes I feel I’m a bit of a fat belly. I’m going to go down weight. I’m the 145 pound champion. It will be on my terms this time. He was way bigger than the last time. I knew I was up agaisnt it. I was thinking this might be a mistake, but I said, f-ck it, I’ll train hard, be smart, learn from our mistakes and go in. But I belive that if we do it it’ll be 155, maybe for the belt.
On the leg kicks:
Fuck leg kicks. My leg is a bitch.
On the scoring
I felt I won the fight. 3-2 was a fair opinion. I won that fight and I’m happy with it. My respect to my opponent. He’s a hell of a fighter.
White appears on ESPN to talk about McGregor-Diaz UFC 2o2.
It lived up to all my expectations, and exceeded it. I didn’t see that fight going five rounds, but it did. One minute it looked like Conor was gassed, and he got a second wind. Diaz got dropped a couple of times, looked like he was done, and he came back. It’s an absolute epic fight. [Conor] did what I thought he might do. He was chopping that leg. I thought he would go to the body a lot more.
On a third fight:
Well Connor has to defend his title or give it up…If I was Conor I would defend my title.
Dana White Post UFC 202: Diaz vs. McGregor 2 Interview "Epic Fight" & Conor's Future