Conor McGregor’s #1 Trait
“… I have an answer. I have an answer for everything.”
Speaking as a fan, as a martial artist, as an Irishman (albeit long since removed), I’m excited to see someone burst on the scene with such fervor. Leading up to the fight between Chad Mendes and Conor McGregor in UFC 189, I educated myself on this man. I honestly wanted to see what all the hype was about.
What I saw, even in just his interviews, was a man destined for greatness. Some people can talk smack, as Conor often does, but I’ve never seen someone back it up quite like he does. Plus, he knows it’s for show. As arrogant as he may seem, it’s clear that he knows the game, knows how to get attention, and with it, how to get inside your opponent’s head.
Some people have been pretty vocal against this guy – Jose Aldo accusing Conor or taking performance enhancing drugs, and lately, famous comedian Bill Burr. Bill, who admittedly says that he “knows nothing of the sport,” slams Conor on his tactics of intimidation and smack-talking.
The point that I’d like to make is a lot of fighters these days smack-talk- it’s a soundbite; sometimes it’s personal… most of the time it’s business. If you’re a fight fan, how many times have you seen these athletes belittle and agitate their soon-to-be opponent, only to hug, give kind words and thank/congratulate them for a well-faught event afterwards? If you’re a fight fan, we know this is true. As a human being of the modern age; at this point at least, we should know what grabs people’s attention – drama, controversy and rivalry.
“Knowing the game” and “Talking the talk” may be good enough to bring in the numbers, but you have to be able to back it up… and back it up time-and-time again. Conor has certainly done just that.
It is undoubtable that Conor has an excellent training regiment, focusing on becoming not necessarily the best fighter, but the most adaptable fighter. He does what it takes to win.
I am fairly sure that he’ll get beaten (at some point), as all fighters typically do – but as long as he listens to his body, keeps up with his training and continues to exude this extremely deep self-belief, he’ll continue to reign for as long as he wants.
While seated at the Bar & Grill with my fellow CombativeCorner crew member Brandon, I speculated on what the upcoming fight between Chad Mendes and Conor McGregor would be like and why I thought that (even with Chad’s tremendous wrestling skills) Conor would continue his glorious unbeaten streak (in the UFC). “It’s about self-belief. There is almost an inhuman amount of self-confidence in this guy. While most people might get hit and wonder this and that, Conor remains a confident, beast-of-a-fighter, that in most circumstances becomes even stronger against more stout opposition. When you strike such a balance between your level of arousal and motivations for a fight, and you couple it with superb training and a monstrous amount of confidence…how can you lose?”
In his own words…
“Doubt is only removed by action. If you’re not working then that’s where doubt comes in.”
Now I know that smack-talking isn’t everyone’s cup-of-tea… and it certainly isn’t mine either. Fighters like GSP, Anderson Silva and Lyoto Machida are amazing sportsman, martial artists and gentlemen of the sport. But everyone is different. Everyone has their path. One thing is true; you have to respect the talent of this guy. You have to recognize that it’s because of this brashness, wit and his sharp tongue that he’s been able to turn people’s heads in so short of a time. Would I like Conor more if he just shut up and towed the line? Nope, because it just wouldn’t be him… and to a certain extent, we all have to agree that personalities make fights.
What are you thoughts on Conor McGregor, and the fight from UFC189?