Conor McGregor seeks redemption as he faces Nate Diaz at UFC 202 on Saturday. Needless to say, The Notorious will be more prepared this time around.
The two previously met at UFC 196 in March. McGregor was supposed to fight Rafael dos Anjos for his UFC lightweight title. Unfortunately, the Brazilian severely injured his foot less than two weeks before the fight.
Diaz was brought in as a substitute, but the match had to be fought at welterweight. Being the ultimate warrior he claims he is, McGregor was amendable to the sudden changes. Diaz went on to win the fight courtesy of a rear-naked choke in the second round.
It was the 19th win of Diaz’s career and McGregor’s 3rd professional loss. During their recent weigh-in for UFC 202, McGregor had some sharp words for Diaz.
“He should have killed me when he had the chance,” said the Irishman, via Fox Sports. “Because now we’re back, I’m gonna kill you and your whole f***ing team! You and them f***ing kids!”
Diaz downplayed the trash talk by saying that McGregor already died the last time they fought. Tensions between the two escalated quickly, prompting UFC president Dana White to separate them.
Michael Blaustein of New York Post indicated that McGregor’s desire to knockout Diaz out might lead to his downfall. McGregor has a penchant for playing with his opponent’s emotions before the fight, then getting the best of them inside the Octagon. The Irishman should be disciplined. He should avoid falling for his own trap.
As for Diaz, the American heavily relies on his durable chin and impeccable stamina. He has the right tools to wear down McGregor. His focus should be on landing solid counter-punches and properly timing his grapples. He successfully did it the first time, and he might actually do it again.
Beating McGregor for a second time would do wonders for Diaz’s career. It would increase his popularity and ensure he would be getting the most out of his prime years in the UFC.
Since his MMA debut in 2004, Diaz has tallied 19 wins and 10 losses. Meanwhile, the much younger McGregor has notched 19 wins and 3 losses in his eight-year career. Apart from having the better record, McGregor is also the more affluent of the two. The Irishman reportedly has a net worth of $15 million, as per Dave Manuel.