With the next UFC event in the promotion’s jam-packed summer promising to be the most awaited when Nate Diaz meets Conor McGregor in the headliner of August 20’s UFC 202 pay-per-view (PPV) from Las Vegas, fans and fighters alike are weighing in on the rematch.
Former UFC welterweight champion Pat Miletich is no different, and the MMA pioneer met up with Submission Radio to offer a polarizing prediction for the massive fight. Like many, Miletich simply believes that McGregor won’t be able to handle Diaz’ size advantage, just as he wasn’t able to in their first meeting at March’s UFC 196, and even if he did, the follow-up challenges at welterweight wouldn’t be so kind:
“He’s going to get his ass beat by Nate again. And even if he were to get lucky and beat Nate, he fights guys that cut down from, you know, some of the guys at 170 are cutting down from 210-215 pounds. I mean, you’re talking skull fractures from punches from guys like that. I mean the 170-pounders who walk around at 200, 200-plus, could punch a heavyweight and break his jaw and knock him out. So these are explosive, very strong guys, who if Conor McGregor even remotely attempts to take them down, he’s going to get shut down. And if he gets hit with a three-punch combo, (he) is going to the hospital.”
As for the rest of the (true) welterweight division, which has arguably been the hottest topic in all of MMA since Tyron Woodley’s first-round knockout of Robbie Lawler at July 30’s UFC 201, Miletich believes that Stephen Thompson deserves the shot, but understands why Woodley would eschew that in favor of bigger moeny fights with Georges St. Pierre and Nick Diaz, as “The Chosen One” has a better shot at beating his “Chosen” opponents:
“Well I’m gonna give it to Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. (But) If I’m Tyron Woodley, I wanna fight Georges St. Pierre and make big money, right? Because I think that Tyron has a good shot against him, given that George had been out for several years. Nick Diaz cannot stop Tyron’s takedowns, so Tyron can control him.”
In Miletich’s opinion, Thompson would give Woodley big problems like he’s done to the rest of the entire welterweight division during his recent seven-fight win streak that has him firmly supplanted as the top contender – albeit one without a title shot:
“But Wonderboy, I’ll tell you what, Wonderboy is going to give him fits. That is a tough fight. And if Tyron is fighting guys like that and a couple of the other guys in the division that he’s going to have trouble with striking-wise who can wrestle, he may run into some problems. And like I say, match-ups really make fights. And there’s certain guys that Tyron matches up with very well and certain guys he does not match up with.”