Conor McGregor already doing things differently for Nate Diaz rematch
Conor McGregor already has adjustments in mind for his second crack at Nate Diaz.
Although no fight has been booked yet, it is expected that McGregor vs Diaz II will be announced in the near future... for the second time.
The do-over of UFC 196's PPV gold headliner was set to go down at the landmark UFC 200 event, but the Notorious' refusal to attend the press conference for the event, saw the fight get removed from the card. Nate Diaz confirmed that the delayed announcement of the sequel scrap was because he was still negotiating with the UFC big wigs for a better deal.
Nate Diaz is ready to call Conor McGregor's bluff https://t.co/or9mB2tVX7
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) May 27, 2016
That first UFC loss appears to still be a fresh wound for the Notorious, who opened up about it to ESPN.
McGregor had the better of the stand-up exchanges in the first round against Diaz, cracking the Stockton native with several loaded up haymakers in the opening stanza. At that point, the Dubliner thought he was in for an easy night's work, but he didn't count on his cardio letting him down.
"The first eight minutes of the fight was easy. Let's be honest, I slapped the head off him."
"Once the gas tank went, that was it. I drowned. He landed that one punch that rang the bell and went, '[Gasp,] I'm back.' He was close to being done. One or two more shots and he would have been wrapped up."
Diaz took the fight on 12 days notice, but what people often forget is that so did McGregor. The featherweight champion had an entire training camp under his belt getting ready for a lightweight bout against Rafael dos Anjos. At the last minute, McGregor had to change everything to get ready for a welterweight contest against a fighter with a completely different style to the 155 lb champ.
The Notorious admitted that he didn't prepare adequately for the opponent change, citing the lack of a weight cut as giving him this false energy boost which he subsequently used to burn himself out.
"Swinging on gymnastic rings on fight week isn't the best thing. Usually, I wrap myself in bubble wrap and only do fight-specific things, but just because of that weight, no weight cut, I had put it in my head that, 'I'm free.' I had energy to burn. I was doing so much bounce footwork, the balls of my feet were burned to a crisp. Looking back, it was ridiculous. I don't know what I was thinking."
McGregor also revealed that he's working with famed nutritionist George Lockhart year-round, after not using his services for the Diaz fight. He has also "brought in experts to monitor his cardiovascular output."
"Look at me right now. Fish, red cabbage, asparagus - I'm nowhere near a fight, and I'm on the clock with nutrition."
McGregor wants it, Diaz wants it, the fans want it and the UFC definitely want the rematch to happen. Here's hoping they pay Diaz what he deserves so we get this fight finalised.