Conor McGregor’s first media appearance in a while took place at the UFC 229 presser in New York City last week. His antics garnered mixed reactions from fellow fighters, some even speculating that he may have been under the influence of some substance during the said media event.
Former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold, however, was left “in awe” of McGregor’s behavior at the presser.
“I watched a bit of it on my drive to practice. It is what it is,” Rockhold said in a recent interview with Submission Radio. “I think there’s obviously somewhat of a communication barrier, but Khabib gets his point across. He’s composed. You can see his demeanor. I know where he’s at.”
“Conor’s…Conor. He’s selling it, man. He’s on the brink of insanity and it’s f—king awesome.”
Rockhold felt that the undefeated Russian was able to handle himself well in terms of dealing with McGregor’s words.
“Khabib’s a pretty smooth character. He doesn’t really let a lot affect him,” Rockhold said. “I think you all can see that. Conor always does his homework, he always does his sh-t and he’s always gonna be himself, but the man can fight.
But in terms of the fight itself, Rockhold is expecting his long-time training partner to prevail, especially once the distance is closed and Khabib gets to establish control.
“We all know Khabib can do his thing. He’s 26-0 now. I mean, that’s an unheard of thing,” he added. “The guy’s never lost. Conor’s lost multiple times. Khabib is dangerous. Anybody can lose, but we’ll see what happens.
“If Khabib gets a hold of him, it’s a different world. You can’t tussle with somebody who’s grappled like that his whole life. I’ve grappled with a lot of 155-pounders in the world and not one, not one can give me the go that Khabib has.”
“I mean, I play with 155-pounders. Khabib is a real go and there’s absolutely no quit in him. He will go to the bitter end. He will go to his death. He has to. I’ve taken him as far as I can ever believe and he just keeps coming. The guy does not, he will not tap to anything. He’s a true fighter.”
UFC 229 takes place in a week’s time, on October 6th at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.