UnderGround Forums Zahabi: McGregor folds under pressure

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 68859

TriStar MMA founder Firas Zahabi has arguably the most insightful mind in mixed martial arts, and his analysis of the UFC 257 main event between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor was not kind to "The Notorious."

“In the second round, when McGregor was getting hit along the fence. I found it strange that he wasn’t — it seemed like he had already gave up on the fight,” said Zahabi. “Before he hit the canvas, I felt like he had given up on the fight, because things were getting tough.

“The fight was getting tough. His left hand didn’t work, and he’s not used to that. He’s not used to hitting guys with the big left, and then keep fighting. McGregor, in the second round, dropped his best card. He landed that perfect left hand, the one he’s relied on his entire career. But for one reason or another, it didn’t work.

“Poirier did not go down, and it seemed that McGregor got emotional about it. He started covering up, he was getting hit, but it didn’t look like he was trying to circle out and survive. He looked like a guy who was like ‘this is the end, I better do something.’ He threw a few punches, but they were like, almost desperate.

“He seemed to get emotional. I looked at his face and he was very very emotional. Whereas if you contrast that with Poirier, when Poirier got hit... he was cool and looking for his next move.”

“I gave McGregor so many pluses. I told you guys he’s a better boxer, he’s a better counterpuncher, he has better reach, and he’s faced Mayweather in boxing. He has so many advantages, but one thing I said, Poirier has the biggest heart. You can’t deny that."

“We saw the will to win overcome skill and technique. McGregor has beautiful skill and technique, punching mechanics. Even towards to the end, his head movement was excellent.

“In my opinion, he’s not used to weathering storms. All the hard fights Poirier had, they all led him to this win last weekend. All those hard fights, those blood-and-guts fights he’s had, they’ve toughened him up mentally. The barrage of punches he was taking would’ve put a lesser seasoned fighter out.

“If you look at McGregor. The punches he took at the end of the fight, that would not have put Poirier out. If you disagree, please look at the Poirier-Hooker fight. You can see that what happened to McGregor at the end of the fight, was happening all for 15 minutes between Poirier and Dan Hooker.

“When McGregor gets into a heated battle, it seems like he folds. It seems like he will fold faster than Poirier by far.”

What do you think UG? Looking at McGregor's UFC losses, the choke vs. Nate Diaz, the crank vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov, and the punches vs. Poirier, does "The Notorious" fold quicker than his opponents would have?

h/t Anton Tabuena for BE

29 days ago
12/26/19
Posts: 1536

He's not wrong. Connor is a wonderful hammer, but a terrible nail. All his losses in the UFC, he quit. Lack of heart is a fair criticism.

Makes you think he never gets pushed in the gym. He may need to mix things up, get away from the yes men, and get in a gym with killers that'll beat his ass everyday.

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 628

Zahabi is right

29 days ago
7/30/03
Posts: 9718

I think it showed in the Mayweather fight also. Sure he was tired but he "overreacted" if you will. He took deep breaths, showed an emotional face, basically communicated to the ref "stop the fight, I'm done." 

29 days ago
9/2/10
Posts: 754

This is what Dustin was saying before the fight. That if he could just get into a dog fight with Mcgregor he liked his chances.

29 days ago
4/11/11
Posts: 9840

100% accurate take.

29 days ago
5/7/09
Posts: 3627

Yep it's true.  Coming from a fan.  He would have to switch camps & be open to being pressured by better training partners in training day after day.  He can't always be the hammer in the gym.

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 11332

Agreed. He does this in all of his losses. when things start going awry, he starts looking helpless and in search of a way out. I'm actually shocked he survived Diaz 2. I think he was fortunate Diaz doesn't have big power. He's a great hammer, but not a great nail.

29 days ago
8/10/05
Posts: 42391
KhabibWinsTheRematch - 

He's not wrong. Connor is a wonderful hammer, but a terrible nail. All his losses in the UFC, he quit. Lack of heart is a fair criticism.

Makes you think he never gets pushed in the gym. He may need to mix things up, get away from the yes men, and get in a gym with killers that'll beat his ass everyday.


Believe You Me.

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 8057

Poirier, Gaethje, Hooker, Ferguson, Diaz are all OK with a dog fight. McGregor is not a fighter, he is a performer. When he realises he can't perform and it's now a fight, he wants out. He's a front-runner.

29 days ago
11/10/18
Posts: 12058

I agree that McGregor is a front runner, no denying that. I disagree that he gave up after his left didn’t work. In my opinion he gives up when he gets tired. I believe it’s a cardio issue and that it’s been a cardio issue every single time he’s had a problem. He is surrounded by yes men, true ass licking sycophants and he never gets pushed in training. I bet he never loses a round in sparring. You know how Firas said he told guys he’d pay them if they could KO GSP in training? I guarantee that doesn’t happen in McGregor’s camps. I don’t think any of this matters at this point, as McGregor is on the downside of Father Time and he’s far too wealthy to get out of his comfort zone and truly make changes.

Edited: 29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 8058
Eskimo - 

I agree that McGregor is a front runner, no denying that. I disagree that he gave up after his left didn’t work. In my opinion he gives up when he gets tired. I believe it’s a cardio issue and that it’s been a cardio issue every single time he’s had a problem. He is surrounded by yes men, true ass licking sycophants and he never gets pushed in training. I bet he never loses a round in sparring. You know how Firas said he told guys he’d pay them if they could KO GSP in training? I guarantee that doesn’t happen in McGregor’s camps. I don’t think any of this matters at this point, as McGregor is on the downside of Father Time and he’s far too wealthy to get out of his comfort zone and truly make changes.


I think his stamina issues are genetic and worsened by partying/inactivity.

BTW he was tired by the end of the first. The difference to how the two fighters looked in their corners between the 1st and 2nd was quite shocking.

Contrast with Diaz in the rematch - legs brutalised, hit hard multiple times and he just keeps coming. Against Poirier, once he was a bit tired, the left wasn't doing what he needed it to and his leg was brutalised, he mentally just checked out. I suspect he pretty much just let Poirier stop him to get out. Poirier would have won like that regardless but I think McGregor just let him have it anyway and it was over a bit quicker. And after the prolonged beating from Khabib, he probably just wanted a quick death this time.

29 days ago
9/20/19
Posts: 8604

Zahabi is probably the most overrated personality  in mma. GSP would literally fly all over the North American continent to NOT train with firas. He’d go train with danaher and Jackson when it really mattered and I think that’s all that needs to be said. 
 

he also won’t roll with women because his pedo prophet says it’s bad. 

29 days ago
4/11/10
Posts: 32198
Sir Psycho Sexy -

100% accurate take.

 

29 days ago
3/15/10
Posts: 426

I know there is a strong “no sparring” school of thought out there now and I think I understand the reason for it. I do not disagree with those reasons, BUT...outside of a few amazing, supremely gifted people, I believe that the only way to cure the shortcomings pointed out in this thread have to happen in training. You can’t be coasting through without being pressured day in and day out. You have to get used to being exhausted, under pressure, beat up, put in terrible positions when you’re tired and hurt, to have the physical and mental conditioning to survive, overcome, and come back when the shit hits the fan. There’s not many Max Holloway’s out there. The rest of us mere mortals have to go through the grinder. 

Just my opinion. That and $5 will get you a small coffee. 

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 8059
Frederick Ettish - 

I know there is a strong “no sparring” school of thought out there now and I think I understand the reason for it. I do not disagree with those reasons, BUT...outside of a few amazing, supremely gifted people, I believe that the only way to cure the shortcomings pointed out in this thread have to happen in training. You can’t be coasting through without being pressured day in and day out. You have to get used to being exhausted, under pressure, beat up, put in terrible positions when you’re tired and hurt, to have the physical and mental conditioning to survive, overcome, and come back when the shit hits the fan. There’s not many Max Holloway’s out there. The rest of us mere mortals have to go through the grinder. 

Just my opinion. That and $5 will get you a small coffee. 


Is this the real Fred Ettish?

29 days ago
9/20/19
Posts: 8606
U4EA -
Frederick Ettish - 

I know there is a strong “no sparring” school of thought out there now and I think I understand the reason for it. I do not disagree with those reasons, BUT...outside of a few amazing, supremely gifted people, I believe that the only way to cure the shortcomings pointed out in this thread have to happen in training. You can’t be coasting through without being pressured day in and day out. You have to get used to being exhausted, under pressure, beat up, put in terrible positions when you’re tired and hurt, to have the physical and mental conditioning to survive, overcome, and come back when the shit hits the fan. There’s not many Max Holloway’s out there. The rest of us mere mortals have to go through the grinder. 

Just my opinion. That and $5 will get you a small coffee. 


Is this the real Fred Ettish?

Yes 

29 days ago
8/15/07
Posts: 21454
Frederick Ettish - 

I know there is a strong “no sparring” school of thought out there now and I think I understand the reason for it. I do not disagree with those reasons, BUT...outside of a few amazing, supremely gifted people, I believe that the only way to cure the shortcomings pointed out in this thread have to happen in training. You can’t be coasting through without being pressured day in and day out. You have to get used to being exhausted, under pressure, beat up, put in terrible positions when you’re tired and hurt, to have the physical and mental conditioning to survive, overcome, and come back when the shit hits the fan. There’s not many Max Holloway’s out there. The rest of us mere mortals have to go through the grinder. 

Just my opinion. That and $5 will get you a small coffee. 


Well said, sir.
29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 8060

Can't believe after all this time watching MMA and being on this forum I'm speaking to one of the legends. All you early guys had massive balls and are all legends.

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 61148
Frederick Ettish - 

I know there is a strong “no sparring” school of thought out there now and I think I understand the reason for it. I do not disagree with those reasons, BUT...outside of a few amazing, supremely gifted people, I believe that the only way to cure the shortcomings pointed out in this thread have to happen in training. You can’t be coasting through without being pressured day in and day out. You have to get used to being exhausted, under pressure, beat up, put in terrible positions when you’re tired and hurt, to have the physical and mental conditioning to survive, overcome, and come back when the shit hits the fan. There’s not many Max Holloway’s out there. The rest of us mere mortals have to go through the grinder. 

Just my opinion. That and $5 will get you a small coffee. 


I think the case for someone like Max or even Dustin is that they have been so active and are at a point in their careers where they may not need to hard spar much. For Connor, I thought that this time out may have let him not take so much wear and tear on his body but perhaps due to the lack of octagon time, he probably needed some decent sparring. And perhaps his MMA toughness wasn't conditioned enough. The Cowboy fight also ended too quickly and then Connor never fought for the rest of the year....he was apparently throwing Dana some opponents like Diego lol but im sure he could have gotten a top 10 LW easily.

29 days ago
11/20/09
Posts: 49041

I thought I was subbed to Firas's youtube channel but I haven't had any updates in a long time. 

Everytime he talks the philosphy of fighting, that dude is incredibly insightful.  

This article in the Op is an example of how he views the mental aspect of fighting. 

Firas the mma coach is like the Wayne Gretzky of hocky.  He's a cut above everyone else.

29 days ago
11/20/08
Posts: 22970
Domingo -

Agreed. He does this in all of his losses. when things start going awry, he starts looking helpless and in search of a way out. I'm actually shocked he survived Diaz 2. I think he was fortunate Diaz doesn't have big power. He's a great hammer, but not a great nail.

He was on his way out, all Nate had to do was to put a little bit more pressure on, just a little.

29 days ago
4/22/07
Posts: 76004

He did get hit pretty solid in this one. Maybe Zahabi can use this KO loss as an excuse to turn him into a boring wrestler.

29 days ago
1/3/08
Posts: 4004

Not sure I agree, his losses against Nate he gassed trying to take him out then Nate overwhelmed him in the second fight he went through a couple of tough rounds but fought through to win,  Khabib did want he always does but Conor survived 4 rounds and won the third against Dustin he got his leg taken out then picked apart, swinging for the fences may be desperate but what else could he do at that point? But I don’t equate that to a lack of heart or looking for a way out he just got beat.

29 days ago
1/1/01
Posts: 11429

Plain and simple McGregor is afraid to get hurt. He doesn’t have that fighter’s spirit which is most defined when there is adversity. 
I placed sizable bets on McGregor being TKO’d/KO’d in either round 3, 4, or 5. Even I overestimated his heart.