With Nurmagomedov vs McGregor looming as the most anticipated UFC matchup in history we take a trip back down memory lane to a similar build-up to UFC 202. The top billing between Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor was punctuated by the slogan “Anytime. Any Weight. Anywhere”. The fight was the second matchup between the two, with Diaz having won their first bout at UFC 196 by way of rear-naked choke.
The pair had planned for a rematch at UFC 200, however, a media scheduling disagreement with the McGregor camp saw him pulled from the event with Diaz also withdrawing saying it was Conor or it was no one. The fight was finally back on at UFC 202 but the build-up was as pent-up as the lead up to any fight could be.
McGregor ended up winning the fight in controversial circumstances by decision Decision scored 48-47, 47-47, 48-47 over the five rounds. Many, including himself, thought that Diaz had won the fight pretty convincingly. Diaz’ reaction as the decision was read out tells the story perfectly. This led to Diaz being incredibly vocal about his loss, but the stats definitely read in Conor’s favour.
Hahaha u didn't even win 😎
— Nathan Diaz (@NateDiaz209) August 23, 2016
But post-fight, and drowned out by crowd noise and commentary during the telecasted footage was an interaction between Diaz and McGregor that in the wake of all the lead-up banter and trash talk put all respect above all. At the end of the day, the mind games are part of fighting and respect should be shown after the swords are back in their scabbards. Finally behind the scenes footage has been released showing not only a different angle and perspective on things but also with audio that reveals the truth.