As UFC 202 approaches, Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz are preparing for another war in the Octagon.
Their first fight was a bloody one that took fans on a wild roller coast ride with McGregor being submitted by Diaz in the end.
During the UFC 202 conference call on Friday, “The Notorious” spoke about the strengths he found Diaz had from their fight at UFC 196.
“If I really look at it, he has a solid chin, he’s durable, very experienced, he has the size and the weight on me — I think that was the wrong thing to go and expect (the knockout) in the first round,” McGregor said (transcribed by MMA Fighting). “And I did go out to KO him in the first round. I can say that. I marched forward and backed him up against the fence and teed off on his head. I did what I said I would do. But respect to him, he stood out, he’s durable, he’s experienced, he weathered the storm.”
Although McGregor lost by submission, the featherweight champion doesn’t think that it was Nate’s jiu-jitsu that overwhelmed him.
“I’m confident in my jiu-jitsu,” McGregor said. “Nate is very skilled on the mat. I don’t think the difference between us in that fight was the jiu-jitsu. I think it was the durability, the endurance, the experience. I think that was the difference.”
McGregor said that with the loss, he gained a lot of experience and will show everyone that he has learned from it and it will all show on August 20.
“So it was nice to go in there and face a man who, although he was close to crumbling, he stuck in there and showed his experience and durability. It was nice to experience that, and now I have a chance to go back in and use what I have learned from that fight and go at it again. So I’m very, very excited for this fight. It’s going to be a hell of a fight. The last one was a hell of a fight. We went in there, we stood toe-to-toe. The fans are in for a treat, but make no mistake, my hand will be raised.”