Nate Diaz impressed a lot of people last week when he made his highly-anticipated Octagon return at UFC 241.
Diaz outclassed Anthony “Showtime” Pettis in the co-main event. After, he called out Jorge Masvidal to meet him inside the cage next. Many believed Diaz would call out Conor McGregor for their trilogy bout. The Irishman was, indeed, watching the pay-per-view (PPV), and drew a ton of inspiration from Diaz’s performance.
Speaking to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on Sports Center, McGregor explained why he was so motivated by Diaz’s performance.
“I’ve studied every single scenario that’s happened to me. I’ve studied every single scenario that has happened in the game. I am eager to come back here. So we will see what will happen in the future but I’m going in confident with a lot of knowledge gained about myself, about my skillset, about my mindset. And I look forward to implementing them and getting back on track. Look at Nate Diaz, last fight three years ago, defeated by me and came back and won. And it was a motivating experience for me. Look at Stipe Miocic came back against a knockout loss.
“Won his title back against a man that knocked him out. There’s so many stories of this and mine is going to be the greatest one of all. And that’s what I’m aiming for. Even Urijah Faber, a former foe/friend of mine. He came back 40 years of age. The game is far from over for me and I’m very excited. I had a little road bump, I was preparing for July in Madison Square Garden. I was in phenomenal condition mentally and physically, the best I’ve ever been. I learned so much from the damage I took in that last camp what not to do.
“And how to approach this next time. And I gained, I was in phenomenal condition. Then I little slip up again. I’m just trying to find that balance, and get motivated again. And I’m looking for inspiration from everywhere. Like I said, I took great motivation from watching Nate go out and do his thing. Even looking at Nate, there’s many things that were amazing about that whole performance for me from Nate, but one of the most important ones that stood out for me – the very first thing he said post-fight was “The Nick Diaz Army.””
“He gave a shout out to his brother. And I hope his brother is doing well, I hope Nick is doing well, a soldier of the game, of the real fight game. And he gave him respect straight off the bat. That’s why the fan’s love Nate, that’s why I love and respect Nate. Even now with the cannabis strain that he’s coming out with. I hope he has his business mind screwed on, because he’s in a position now where he can make a generation like I have. And I hope to see that and these are the things I’m looking at, taking motivation from, to use in my game to push me forward.”
McGregor has not yet been announced for a return to action. He did note that he believes he’ll fight before the year is up. As for who his opponent will be, that remains to be seen.
What do you think about McGregor being motivated by Diaz’s performance at UFC 241?