Frankie Edgar’s camp have been among the most vocal detractors of Conor McGregor in MMA over the last few months.
Feeling entitled to a UFC featherweight title shot in the wake of an impressive first-round knockout win over Chad Mendes, the team have regularly called “The Notorious” one out and accused him of running from the challenge.
When Frankie himself wasn’t talking about McGregor, his agent, Ali Abdel-Aziz, was doing so. Abdel-Aziz even went so far as to pose as his client on Twitter and do a little trash-typing in the Dubliner’s direction.
Edgar’s head coach, Mark Henry, was also a regularly derisive voice.
During an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Henry accused McGregor of being afraid to fight men of his own size, but in somewhat contradictory fashion he also urged the Pay-per-view star to solidify his claim to featherweight supremacy before taking on new challenges in heavier weight-classes.
“He’s the one that’s been scared for so many years cutting down from 180, 175 to fight guys with less range, weight and height, while Frankie was 152 fighting 155,” said the trainer.
“So now you have the belt – man up and defend it. Like they said in Braveheart, ‘Don’t tuck tail and run'”.
In the aftermath of McGregor’s ascension to 170lbs, it has become a lot harder for Henry to make claims about the titleholder being afraid.
That hasn’t stopped him from having a pop, however.
Following Friday night’s UFC 196 weigh-in, the New Jersey based coach took to Instagram with a sarcastic message of congratulations for the SBG fighter and his mentor, John Kavanagh. The note accompanied an admittedly shocking picture that had been doing the rounds online, which highlights the physical differences between the featherweight McGregor and the 168lb version that stood atop the scales last night.
Maybe you aren’t a fan of Henry or his sarcasm, but looking at the comparison it’s hard not to agree with the basic message. Few would want to see Conor attempt another cut to 145lbs.