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John Kavanagh was ‘slightly terrified’ watching Nate Diaz absorb Conor McGregor’s blows

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Conor McGregor landed plenty of big shots on Nate Diaz in the first fight. The second one was a bit different, according to McGregor’s coach John Kavanagh.

At UFC 196, Diaz was moving away from a lot of the punches, reducing the impact. On Saturday night, though, Diaz was coming forward, absorbing the full power of McGregor’s left hands. And eating every one of them.

“You can’t get a heavier shot than that,” Kavanagh said Monday on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani. “And what does Nate do? Puts his hands out and walks forward. I’m not gonna lie, I was slightly terrified.”

McGregor did end up winning the hard-fought, bloody contest by majority decision (48-47, 47-47, 48-47). But Diaz was in it until the end, winning the fifth round on the judges’ scorecards and taking a dominant third frame. Diaz, of course, won the first fight via second-round submission.

In past fights, opponents have been melted down and put out by McGregor punches. Not Diaz. He was knocked down once in the first and twice in the second. But was never really in any danger of being finished. Somehow.

Kavanagh believes Diaz is McGregor’s staunchest test and will continue to be that moving forward.

“For me, I was looking at him just taking these heavy shots and walking forward, smiling,” Kavanagh said. “In my head, I’m going, I’m glad I’m on the outside here. This is insane that Conor has hit him with everything. It’s an incredible ability Nate has. That’s why I think it’s the toughest fight.”

One particular moment stood out to Kavanagh. It was the fourth round, the one in which McGregor rallied and all but sealed the fight. McGregor went for a spinning back kick to Diaz’s body and Kavanagh corrected him.

Kavanagh shouted to McGregor to stick ….View full article

Source:: mma fighting