Tristar head-coach Firas Zahabi has responded to Conor McGregor public criticism of him following his prediction for a rematch between him and Max Holloway.
Speaking during a recent AMA session (via Bloody Elbow), Zahabi used the possibility of a rematch between McGregor and Max Holloway as a foundation to give his take on the weaknesses he feels are present in the Irishman’s game.
“If I had to pick Max Holloway vs. McGregor today, I would pick Max Holloway.
“I think Holloway has grown leaps and bounds since then. In my opinion, Holloway would outpunch him, outwork him. He would do very much what Diaz did, but more. I think McGregor got away with a lot of stuff, like the leg kicks against Diaz, but I don’t think he’ll have that against Holloway.
“Holloway has the same type of output as Diaz, the same kind of chin as Diaz. He’s more athletic than Diaz, he has more variety in his attacks, he has more kicking, kneeing and elbowing, and his chin is just phenomenal.
“So I really think he would take it in the later rounds. I think the blueprint for beating McGregor is more well understood by the roster.”
McGregor was quick to fire back at the famed coach, attacking him for giving his input whilst in a role that does not involve fighting. It was a characteristically scathing stab from the Irishman full of all of the colour and venom you would expect from the former two-weight world champion.
Hey firaz. Young man afraid to get in and fight, himself. Stop talking about me like you know me, you twerp.
You are what age? Why are not in there yourself? Are you not up to it?
You rent dorms and hit a clock for a living.
Shut your pie, kid.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) January 9, 2019
Now, Firas has responded to McGregor’s attack, again during an Ask Me Anything (via Bloody Elbow), and overall, made an attempt to make it clear that his analysis is not something to be taken personally.
“There was nothing personal. The reason why I didn’t respond to McGregor (on Twitter) is he got personal, and I don’t do that.
“I kind of glanced over, then I realized it was about me, and realized he’s insulting me. I thought to myself, ‘hey the double champ watches my podcast! That’s amazing!
“How great is that? I’m gonna give Conor McGregor a shoutout on my podcast.’ Then somebody pointed out to me, ‘no, it was regards to an article that came out… about me picking Max Holloway over Conor McGregor’ That’s why Conor got upset and went to Twitter.
“So I thought to myself, ‘Oh, he doesn’t listen to my podcast. Too bad.’ But then I realized, ‘hey, he talked about the dorms. That article doesn’t talk about the dorms!’ If he knows about the dorms, he’s listened to this podcast. So I want to give a shoutout to Conor.
“Thank you for supporting this channel. I really appreciate you listening to this, and I want to let you know it was nothing personal.”
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena