Tyson Fury fully believes Conor McGregor’s explanation for his defeat to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 last week.
After being stopped in the second round by Dustin Poirier, Conor McGregor pointed to inactivity as the reason for the defeat in the rematch, having been out of the Octagon for 12 months.
Some, like former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping for example, have cast doubt on McGregor’s ‘ring rust’ explanation and suggested that the Irishman was simply beaten by the better man on the night.
"I have to dust it off and come back."
— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) January 24, 2021
However, WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has no doubt that inactivity played a role in the outcome of the UFC 257 main event.
“He’s bang on right!” Fury said of McGregor’s explanation during a recent interview with Gareth A. Davies.
“Conor McGregor fought in 2016, then he had two years out and then he fought Khabib. Then he had another two years out and then he fought [Donald] Cerrone.
“Then he had another year out, and then he fought this guy, [Dustin] Poirier.
“So inactivity kills the cat, no doubt about it. When one man’s been active – fighting, sparring and in camps – and one man’s been on the couch, it’s no good.”
Fury knows all about inactivity, having spent almost three years out of the ring after his victory over Wladimir Klitschko.
And while Fury remains undefeated in spite of that period of inactivity, ‘The Gypsy King’ has outlined the impact that ring rust can have on a fighter.
“You lose your timing, you lose your distance, you lose it all,” Fury continued. “You lose it all, it’s all got to be gained back within camps and within fighting.
“If you had three fights on the bounce after you’d never been in the ring for three years, in the third one you’d be ten times better than the first.
“I’ve always known it because I’m a boxing historian, I’ve always known about the inactivity.
“Gerry Cooney when he fought Larry Holmes – he was out of the ring for 18 months. His timing wasn’t there, he just wasn’t the same fighter as he should’ve been.
“If one man’s not active and one man’s been in the ring, it’s an uphill battle.”