Over the weekend, UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov picked up his first title defense — and the biggest win of his career — choking out former lightweight and featherweight champion Conor McGregor in the first round. While Nurmagomedov’s win over McGregor was quite lopsided, it wasn’t enough to impress former Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz.
In Diaz’s eyes, Conor McGregor didn’t look like himself in the fight. He also finds Khabib Nurmagomedov’s fighting style ‘dirty.’
"I think my brother could beat him… I definitely know I can beat him." Nick Diaz speaks on #UFC229 Post fight melee, and Khabib's "dirty" fighting style.
Posted by UFC on FOX on Monday, October 8, 2018
“I don’t think Conor looked like himself in that fight,” Nick Diaz told UFC on Fox. “First time I saw him on screen. Yeah, I don’t think he looked 100% Conor McGregor in that fight.”
“I wanted him to win because I’m tired of seeing [Nurmagomedov’s] type of style win,” he added. “To me it’s a dirty fighting style.”
While Khabib Nurmagomedov is looking increasingly like an unbeatable fighter, Nick Diaz is confident that both he and his brother Nate could beat the Russian champion.
“Yeah [we could beat him], because you have to have a certain style to beat that kind of wrestler on the ground,” Nick Diaz said. “McGregor’s like brand new on the bottom. I think my brother could beat him, I definitely think I could beat him, but I’d have to fight him at a catchweight cause I’d have a hard time getting down to 155 pounds.”
“You’ve got to be like McGregor, but you’ve got to be able to survive that bottom game, you know? He didn’t have good defense on the bottom, he didn’t have the right formula on the bottom.”
“The two things people want out of mixed martial arts right now is more of me, and less of you [Nurmagomedov],” Diaz concluded. “Less of the wrestler. Less of the defensive boxer and wrestler who puts on a boring fight. It’s just a dirty way of fighting… holding onto somebody and giving them little hits. So yeah, I’ve got to take McGregor’s side on that one.’
What do you think of these comments from Nick Diaz? Did Conor McGregor look off? Is Khabib Nurmagomedov ‘dirty?’
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 10/8/2018.