The most anticipated fight I’m looking forward to tomorrow night isn’t Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz 2. It’s the co-main event featuring Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and Glover Teixeira. If that fight lives up to the hype, it’s going to be a doozie.
McGregor is promising to starch Diaz, but hardly anybody that is well versed in MMA (sans Irish fans…) thinks that’s going to happen. The whole time leading up to the rematch (including the UFC 200 debacle which saw the original rematch removed from the card) I’ve been in the mindset that this is Nate Diaz’s fight to lose, that he’ll defeat Conor, but I’m having second thoughts.
I admire the Diaz Brothers’ boxing and jiu jitsu abilities. Both of them prefer to stand up and goad their opponents into getting into a slugfest with them, which typically goes in the Diaz Bros’ favor. In the first fight between Nate and Conor, Nate took the fight on nine days’ notice, and Conor had to quickly prepare for a 170-lb. fight when he was originally planning for a 155-lb. superfight against Rafael dos Anjos. In the first round, Conor hit Nate with some bombs that would’ve dropped the 145-lb. fighters Conor was facing before that fight, but his shots — outside of turning Nate’s face into pizza sauce — did next to nothing in regards to damaging Nate.
By the second round, Conor was gassed and Nate started hitting him with combos before he rocked Conor, which then Conor shot in for an anomalous takedown before Nate used his superior grappling and jiu-jitsu to flatten Conor and lock in a rear naked choke for the victory.
I can’t wait to see how this one goes. My girlfriend is even super hyped for this one (she’s a McGregor fangirl).
With Nate Diaz having a full camp this time, will he dominate Conor McGregor even more-so than the first fight?
Will Conor McGregor avoid expending all his energy in the first round against Diaz?
What if McGregor spent the fight utilizing kicks against Diaz? The thing about the Diaz Brothers is that they are stubborn against fighters who execute leg kicks and take their time circling the octagon and avoiding being cut off all night. McGregor could win this spending all five rounds staying on the outside and hitting Nate with kicks all night for a unanimous decision victory, but that wouldn’t be any fun.
I have a feeling that Conor won’t do that. He’s a prideful Irishman, and I reckon he’ll stand and trade with Nate again. I just wonder if he’ll still try to win on points. It’s going to be interesting.
Going against the grain on this one… McGregor by KO/TKO… somehow, someway…