The current 135lb UFC champion and his legendary coach sat down with Joe Rogan and gave some pretty valuable insight into the causes for Conor McGregor’s stamina dip in last month’s record-breaking showdown with Floyd Mayweather.
We’re now just about ten days removed from boxing’s potentially record-breaking super-fight between Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather but despite the fact that the dust has settled to some degree, discussions about the intricacies of that surprisingly intriguing matchup are still ever-present in the sporting media.
Debates over the strategies employed by both men, the work-ethic of Floyd Mayweather in the lead-up and the seemingly diminished punching power of Conor McGregor have dominated forums, blogs, and our airwaves in recent times but the subject that has caused the most interest has been the stamina management of the Irishman, something that played a pretty huge role in the rhythm of the contest on fight-night.
Of course, McGregor’s chances – stamina issues or not – were slim to begin with but the manner in which he so dramatically faded around the midway point of the fight caused many to wonder at exactly what he could have done differently to avoid such a drop-off.
Two men whose own conditioning ranks amongst the most solid in mixed martial arts today, Urijah Faber and his protegé Cody Garbrandt, joined Joe Rogan on a recent edition of the Joe Rogan Experience Podcast and gave some very interesting insight into how the switch between boxing and MMA may have thrown Conor’s ability to fight economically off, to some degree. Garbrandt, who won the bantamweight title with a thrilling win over Dominick Cruz last year, echoed McGregor’s own analysis when he gave credit to Floyd’s composure and how it is a skill that differs from sport to sport.
“It’s crazy what you have to be in shape for, going in to fight in the cage. You have to be in great wrestling condition, boxing condition. Those are all different conditionings. A boxer comes in and wrestles and he’s toast in the minute, if that. Sometimes wrestlers – same thing – they go in there and box, it’s just composure.
“Conor said it right after Mayweather, the shots were nothing it was just the composure.”
Rogan, who is, of course, no chump when it comes to the science behind combat, then chimed in with his own views on McGregor’s explosiveness and how it played directly into the hands of the Money Team, who would have undoubtedly seen Conor’s issues with endurance in his pair of contests with Nate Diaz at UFC 196 and UFC 202 last year.
“He [Floyd] is just so efficient too and he knew Conor was going to fade because he was relying so much on explosiveness and tense and he didn’t have enough time to prepare.”
Urijah Faber is without a doubt sitting among the gutsiest and determined fighters of all time and never lost his supreme work-rate – even in his later years – and in continuing on from where Rogan left off, gave an excellent analogy about the different levels of comfort one achieves when they dedicate their entire life to one specific skillset, as opposed to the more multi-faceted world of MMA.
“Not only that. I thought Conor did a good job at staying nice and flowy and all that, but here’s the truth. I could take a pretty good high-school wrestler – or even like a really good high-school wrestler and put him against an Olympic gold medalist.
“I mean there is going to be a difference but when the fatigue cracks even a little, one guy is going to keep composure completely and the other guy is going to have a little bit of an opening and the other guy will be able to isolate that and I think that’s what happened.”
Some pretty fantastic insight from this trio – in particular from Faber – but right or wrong, expect the combat sporting world to slowly move on from the absolute insanity of this event and with the likes of UFC 215, UFC 216, UFC 217 and Canelo/GGG to look forward to, the end of 2017 will surely be a great one for those who enjoy a good scrap.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena
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