In a recent interview with BJPenn.com, Nick Diaz echoed the pre-UFC 196 sentiments of his brother Nate by questioning the quality of Conor McGregor’s SBG training partners.
Actually ‘questioning’ might be putting it mildly.
“I’m just saying he’s (Nate) had f**king matches with top blacks belts all over,” started the always abrasive Diaz. “This guy is one of best f**king black belts in the world(points at someone off camera). And you got the best f**king Irish guys over there, they just wanted to start to do this. Everybody jumping on board because one Irish dude is going somewhere amongst all the Irish”.
“But this isn’t f**king Ireland – this is the best grapplers in the world you have here, sparring and working with the best boxers in the world here. But there ain’t no money behind any sort of advertisement going out to promote our situation and there never has been”.
“There’s a lot of money going out into advertising McGregor, otherwise he wouldn’t a big superstar right now. And I’m talking before the Aldo fight”.
Nick and Nate aren’t the first ones to suggest that the UFC featherweight champion’s current training situation isn’t ideal for a fighter competing at a world-class level. Observers of the sport have long wondered aloud if McGregor will be able to achieve his full potential while training at home in Dublin.
Despite the fact that he has several teammates now fighting in the UFC, many feel that “The Notorious doesn’t have a sufficient number of high-level fighters with whom he can work. Thus, say the SBG detractors, his growth has been stunted and he hasn’t developed into a truly rounded mixed martial artist.
Perhaps reflecting the U.S-centric nature of the sport more than anything else, the most commonly suggested remedy to this problem has been a move to one of the bigger gyms stateside.
“The Notorious”, however, has always remained steadfast in his refusal to stray from the coaches and team that molded him into the fighter he is today.
It’s a loyalty that has endured through two previous losses and plenty of adversity, so don’t expect things to change in the wake of this most recent setback.