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"I didn't give him his respect" - when Conor McGregor candidly discussed what went wrong in the Khabib Nurmagomedov fight at UFC 229

UFC 229: Khabib v McGregor Press Conference.
UFC 229: Khabib v McGregor Press Conference.
Deepit Sharma
Modified 25 Mar 2021

Conor McGregor is notorious for his trash talk and confidence building up to a fight. He asserts his superiority over his opponents, ensuring a psychological setback for whoever faces him. Yet we have never seen him carry on with the same demeanor in the event of a loss. Whether it be his recent loss against Dustin Poirier or his first loss in the UFC at the hands of Nate Diaz, 'The Notorious One' has always given his opponents the credit they deserve for a well-fought bout.

Despite his extremely personal and publicized beef with Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor did not hesitate to praise the Russian's performance. While addressing a crowd, Conor McGregor spoke about his fight with 'The Eagle'. He said:

"... I gave him credit for that. So, I've got to respect that. He is a formidable opponent. Wrestle bears since he was a kid. Put a lot of time into his stand-up. He was a lot sharper than I anticipated he was going to be. So, I have to respect that, you know. It was his big moment."

Conor McGregor reveals that he did not respect Khabib Nurmagomedov's skills going into the fight

Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov clashed at the UFC 229 pay-per-view in October 2018. The two developed a huge beef going into the fight, and it did not end after the contest. After making Conor McGregor submit, Khabib Nurmagomedov jumped into Conor McGregor's team to face Dillon Danis. The grappling coach made some deeply personal comments about Khabib Nurmagomedov, warranting the latter's anger.

Although Conor McGregor continued to stay true to his enemity with the Russian, he admitted that he should have respected Khabib Nurmagomedov as an opponent. He said:

"... It is very easy for someone to be given something and to do it just one time. You'll put your absolute all into it. But, to do it time after time and year after year, that's when the motivation kind of gives. That's when the dedication lacks. And that's when people creeup up. That's what I feel has happened here, you know. I didn't give him his respect, I marched forward, didn't give a sh*t."

Published 25 Mar 2021, 16:01 IST
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