Javier Mendez, head coach of Khabib Nurmagomedov, recently spoke with Submission Radio following the second-round TKO loss of Conor McGregor to Dustin Poirier at UFC 257 this past weekend.
To put it lightly, he was not impressed whatsoever with what he saw out of McGregor. In fact, he believes that the former two-division champion may have even regressed.
“When I saw Dustin first start going for the leg kicks I go, ‘oh my god, Conor’s stance is not made for checking properly, leg kicks like that – especially calf kicks.’ So I thought that was gonna be a major problem,” Mendez told Submission Radio. “Then when he hit Dustin with a good shot, and Dustin took it, that’s when I knew, ‘oh boy things are gonna change.’ And sure enough they did.”
“It was a great game plan from Dustin to work the leg kicks, calf kicks, and it was a bad judgement on Conor’s part to not be prepared for that,” he added. “I don’t understand how you could not be prepared for something like that when that’s what everyone’s going to.”
“I mean, Khabib, I reminded him everyday that ‘Justin’s coming after your legs, Justin’s coming after your legs.’ Every day I was telling him that,” Mendez said regarding his last training camp with Khabib in preparations for Justin Gaethje. “You would think that (McGregor) would be reminded also, because that’s a big weapon, and until fighters learn how to deal with it, it’s gonna be a big weapon, guys, big weapon.”
Mendez was asked how a he believes a second fight between Khabib and McGregor would have gone based off the McGregor he saw in the fight against Poirier.
“He would have got smashed,” Mendez said. “Khabib’s gotten better. He would have got smashed, straight up. Khabib’s better. He’s better than he was when they fought two years ago. Conor didn’t appear to be better. He appears to have regressed a little bit. Khabib’s gotten way better. He would have got smashed.”