Ahead of Nate Diaz’s return to the UFC octagon at UFC 241 on August 17, relive his finest moment, his incredible second-round stoppage of Conor McGregor at UFC 196.
It’s a mixture of the shock of what transpired inside the MGM Grand that night and the instant-classic status of its UFC 202 sequel that in many ways has made some forget just how good a fight this was.
Our expectations were turned completely on their head, yes, but even on the surface-level, this was an absolute war between two of the most game fighters in the sport.
We all know the story at this point. In a time where the now-glaring hole in Conor’s cardio wasn’t known to the world, watching him exert dominance over the larger man was incredibly impressive – up until things went south.
Rewatching the fight now will show you exactly how well Nate was able to use his length, reach, and traditional boxing base to avoid absorbing the brunt of the Irishman’s left-hand shots but even still, if it weren’t for his ridiculous ability to absorb damage, the fight would have not lasted as long as it did.
Once Diaz was able to smell blood, he began to turn up the pace considerably, beating McGregor to the point that a TKO was imminent, causing him to shoot for a desperate takedown, beginning the sequence that ended the fight.
Nate will certainly be up against it when he returns to take on Anthony Pettis at UFC 241 but for now, relive the moment that well and truly elevated his name into the pantheon of the sport’s superstars courtesy of the official YouTube account of the UFC.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena