“I’ve been already talking that, before he was even in the UFC. And now he’s this new guy with all this new stuff coming out and everybody is pushing him, everyone is like, ‘yeah!’ and it’s on every article, every headline, because he’s from Ireland. I’m a big fan of what he does, too. He puts it out there, he says the real s***. Just like I say. I got more criticism toward the push than he’s getting… They’re like taking him on like, ‘Go ahead, keep talking.’ With me, they’re like, ‘Put him in the back. Put him on the down low.’ Just the way he says it’s a money fight. I’ve been saying that forever, too. But they got wind of that and they tried to shut me up, they tried to quiet me down… I knew this already, though. I knew how the needle moved. I knew who moved the needle. … I knew this was gonna happen sooner or later… I don’t know if it’s the media or the UFC, but I feel like they didn’t want my stock getting any higher. But they couldn’t stop it. Look where I’m at right now.”
-After Wednesday’s open workouts for UFC 196, Nate Diaz laments the reaction Conor McGregor receives for his trash talking in comparison to what he’s faced through his career (via MMAFighting.com).
Penick’s Analysis: There’s a key difference between the two of them that Diaz isn’t taking into account – McGregor hasn’t lost yet. Yes, Diaz has said a lot of similar things throughout his run in the UFC, but he’s also been beat eight times inside the Octagon. McGregor has made himself a massive star both off the things he says and the fact that, to this point, he’s consistently backed up every word inside the cage itself. Now, the losses have been far from the end for Diaz; he got a title fight, he’s drawn big numbers on TV, and he’s getting this opportunity for a reason. However, they’re relevant when talking about why he hasn’t gotten every opportunity he’s wanted, or why the UFC hasn’t gone along with him always in a top spot. These are two very different situations, and until McGregor faces a setback in the cage, he’s going to continue to get the bigger push from the organization.
[Photo (c) Mark J. Rebilas via USA Today Sports]
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