McGregor will end a near two-year absence from the octagon at the T-Mobile Arena on Saturday to take on an opponent who succeeded him as UFC lightweight champion. "I have to focus on my weight cut". On the other, you have an undefeated fighter who has never lost a single round in his professional career in Khabib Nurmagomedov. "That's what's going to happen on Saturday night".
"The traffic is heavy, there must be a McGregor fight!"
"I am coming to put a hole in this man's skull", he said. Nurmagomedov's 2012 debut led a charge of Dagestani fighters into the UFC, and he has remained the most fearsome of the bunch.
This grudge match has been brewing for the last few years as the pair have been throwing insults back and forth, leading to the infamous dolly incident at UFC 223 in Brooklyn, which Dana White has labelled as the "most disgusting act he has ever seen" when Conor McGregor threw a dolly through the bus window that Khabib was sitting in while preparing for his Lightweight title bout with Al Iaquinta. I'm going to aim right between that man's eyes, and this is never over."As far as the actual fight, Nurmagomedov said he won't underestimate the former two-division champion and that McGregor will have to "kill me to stop me".
"I think beginning of first round I have to be careful with him because he has good timing and good boxing but my wrestling is my pressure", Nurmagomedov said.
Because of these traits, many fans and analysts believe that Khabib Nurmagomedov is a stylistic nightmare for Conor McGregor. "Dig my knuckle into his orbital bone and that's what I'm going to do".
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McGregor turned up nearly 25 minutes late for the media conference, about 10 minutes after the Russian champion had left the stage. "Honestly, for me it's personal", Nurmagomedov said.
"I may want to spark Khabib and then headline that Madison Square Garden card on November 3 (against Abdelaziz)". Let's go. I not wait for nobody.
"How do I come here if I don't believe in myself? Get that man into the sauna and cook him like the little chicken-jaw rat that he is".
Not having McGregor and Nurmagomedov on the same stage at the same time, answering questions and facing off two days before arguably the biggest fight in UFC history, would seemingly be a problem for the UFC. "But if you can't aim for peace, aim between the eyes", he bellowed.
This is the moment McGregor turned up late, complete with vest and cap, as well as giving his prediction for the bout and more.
Yet for McGregor to approach numbers that insane with Nurmagomedov, it's hard to look past the idea that Thursday's event was a missed opportunity.