Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz may not be the superfight we were expecting, but it’s absolutely among the most exciting matchups we might have expected to see as MMA lovers. UFC 196 won’t only feature McGregor vs Diaz, it will likewise see Holly Holm place her bantamweight title on the line for the very first time when she chooses on Miesha Tate.
Conor McGregor (-400) vs Nate Diaz (+300)
We’ve got the featherweight champion taking on the ranked lightweight in a welterweight fight. Yeah, this fight will be a little weird.
McGregor makes his first appearance in the Octagon since dusting Jose Aldo in 13 seconds to win the featherweight title. Considering joining the UFC back in 2013, McGregor is 7-0 with half of those victories coming via stoppage.
Much was made of McGregor’s striking style along with the devastating knockout power the Irishman possesses. His standup game relies within a vertical stance which enables McGregor to throw his kicks without exerting surplus time or energy. He’s become an expert at using his teammates to generate the distance that he can use to open his arsenal of attacks. The swiftness and brutality of these attacks are unparalleled in MMA today.
The biggest question mark in this fight is dimensions. McGregor is fighting 170 lbs for the first time in his profession; a jump of 25 pounds in contrast to his final struggle, and will be in a hit disadvantage for the first time inside the UFC. ‘The Notorious One’ always held a distinct advantage in size at the lower weight classes, but Nate is about four inches taller and includes a two-inch reach advantage.
Diaz owns a fighting style that’s uniquely suited to him and his brother Nick. He’s a volume boxer first and foremost on his toes, meaning that he cries in bunches and loves to be aggressive. The Stockton-native is great at maintaining his distance, fast moving in to throw a flurry and then return to space. Diaz pairs his remarkable skills using a phenomenal ground game that has led to 11 of the 18 career wins coming through submission.
Despite his strong ground game, Diaz is unable to genuinely use it thanks to a poor wrestling match. It appears that Diaz will often attempt to taunt his opponents to a position where they go for the takedown and he can perform his job. Though his striking game is solid, it’s far from ideal as it involves a very simple attack with few unpredictable elements.
Can Diaz submit McGregor? Yes. Will he get the chance to? Not likely.
This is predicted to become a standup affair and though Diaz is a competent striker, he fails to possess the exact same level of skills that McGregor does. Conor has good movement skills, which ought to help him overcome his reach drawback and pick up the win in this one.
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