As part of his UFC 202 conference call that was chockful of news, Conor McGregor re-asserted his belief that he would be a UFC champion in two different weight classes had Rafael dos Anjos not withdrawn from their scheduled lightweight title bout at UFC 196.
Instead, a foot injury forced out dos Anjos less than two weeks before the scheduled event. McGregor fought Nate Diaz instead in a non-title contest that headlined UFC 196, losing by submission in what marked his first defeat since joining the UFC.
McGregor faces Diaz in a rematch in the main event of UFC 202, which takes place August 20 in Las Vegas.
"If I fought Rafael dos Anjos, if he didn't p--- out of that last one and showed up, the shots I cracked Nate [Diaz] with in the first eight minutes of that [fight] would've KO'd Rafael dos Anjos stiff," McGregor said Friday on the call. That's no question. I would be sitting here right now as a two-weight world champion.
"But I don't dwell on that. I am happy that this happened, because it forced me to look at my preparation, look at the route I was going. It forced me to reassess, so I'm happy that this happened. But make no mistake, this one means a hell of a lot to me. This one means more than any amount of gold or money combined. I gave up a hell of a lot of money, I gave up opportunities, Hollywood opportunities, for this contest. I wanted to restrict media. I want to solely focus on this, so that should tell you how much this fight means to me and I've been preparing accordingly."
McGregor and Diaz originally were scheduled to rematch as part of UFC 200 but the fight was dropped because of a disagreement between the promotion and McGregor over his media obligations.
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