Conor McGregor pens lengthy tribute to MMA legend Bas Rutten

Although Conor McGregor is known for his venomous pre-fight trash talk, he is always quick to pay respect to the MMA legends that preceded him.

Speaking on Instagram over the weekend, the former UFC lightweight and featherweight champion did just that, heaping praise on former UFC heavyweight champ and MMA pioneer Bas Rutten. He even credited Rutten with inspiring some of the techniques he used in his recent fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov.

See what he had to say below:

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At the legendary Bas Ruttens gym tonight. Elite MMA. Behind us is the original UFC heavyweight belt that Bas won. Becoming the first European MMA fighter to win a UFC title. To this day there have only been 5 European UFC champions. Bas also secured his nations flag Holland, on the new design UFC belt with this win, as Holland was one of the first 8th countries to birth a UFC world champion. Ireland is on this list also. The belt below the UFC belt is his Pancrase World title. True MMA fans will know Pancrase as one of the first, somewhat form of no holds barred fighting to appear from Japan. A sport where the knuckles were bare but striking with the closed fist to the head was still not allowed. The fist had to be open. It led to heavy open hand clatters becoming the choice of weapon here. The strike was ALWAYS with the bone/knuckle at the end of the palm, connected to the wrist. I’m not sure what the actual name of this bone is, but I like to call it the nom nom knuckle. When Khabib was holding onto my legs against the fence in that first round, I was clattering him with this knuckle right into the temple, over and over. Feeding it to him. Hence nom nom. Devastating blows can be caused with this knuckle, and some of Bas’s greatest highlights are of this shot. A clean open palm strike, straight down the pipe from a standing position, putting the opponent out cold. Fascinating to see. Bas was also one of the originators of the high elbow guillotine, in fighting competition. You will see it frequently now and some fighters have modeled their careers and even fight nicknames off this great submission move. Bas, although not known for his grappling, was one of the first men to win with this technique. Fascinating to watch. I suggest you do. Bas Rutten highlights. Bas also had a training voice recording out, where he would call out MMA combinations and drills. My coach would play it on the radio and we would work. “Double knee, liver shot, 10 sprawls” Bas was the first person to teach me how to piece MMA style combinations together. And it was through a C.D on the radio. Bas Rutten ladies and gentlemen. What a pioneer. “El Guapo” they call him. A PROPER GOER

A post shared by Conor McGregor Official (@thenotoriousmma) on

“At the legendary Bas Ruttens gym tonight. Elite MMA.
Behind us is the original UFC heavyweight belt that Bas won. Becoming the first European MMA fighter to win a UFC title. To this day there have only been 5 European UFC champions.
Bas also secured his nations flag Holland, on the new design UFC belt with this win, as Holland was one of the first 8th countries to birth a UFC world champion.
Ireland is on this list also. 
The belt below the UFC belt is his Pancrase World title. True MMA fans will know Pancrase as one of the first, somewhat form of no holds barred fighting to appear from Japan. A sport where the knuckles were bare but striking with the closed fist to the head was still not allowed. The fist had to be open. It led to heavy open hand clatters becoming the choice of weapon here. The strike was ALWAYS with the bone/knuckle at the end of the palm, connected to the wrist.
I’m not sure what the actual name of this bone is, but I like to call it the nom nom knuckle. 
When Khabib was holding onto my legs against the fence in that first round, I was clattering him with this knuckle right into the temple, over and over. Feeding it to him. 
Hence nom nom.
Devastating blows can be caused with this knuckle, and some of Bas’s greatest highlights are of this shot. A clean open palm strike, straight down the pipe from a standing position, putting the opponent out cold. Fascinating to see. 
Bas was also one of the originators of the high elbow guillotine, in fighting competition. You will see it frequently now and some fighters have modeled their careers and even fight nicknames off this great submission move. Bas, although not known for his grappling, was one of the first men to win with this technique. Fascinating to watch. I suggest you do. Bas Rutten highlights. 
Bas also had a training voice recording out, where he would call out MMA combinations and drills. My coach would play it on the radio and we would work.
“Double knee, liver shot, 10 sprawls”
Bas was the first person to teach me how to piece MMA style combinations together. And it was through a C.D on the radio. 
Bas Rutten ladies and gentlemen.
What a pioneer. “El Guapo” they call him. 
A PROPER GOER”
– Conor McGregor on Instagram.

Interestingly, Conor McGregor also recently paid tribute to the Gracie family, spurred on by the Sunday night UFC debut of Kron Gracie.

What do you think of the Irishman’s comments on Bas Rutten?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 2/17/2019.