Throwback: “On the Ground, He Just Got Mauled”- Joe Rogan Breaks Down Conor McGregor vs Khabib Nurmagomedov

Published 04/20/2020, 9:08 PM EDT


After months of anticipation, Conor McGregor finally took on Khabib Nurmagomedov for the lightweight championship in 2018. Relive their iconic match through the eyes of Joe Rogan.

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Before UFC 223, Khabib Nurmagomedov slapped Conor McGregor’s teammate, Artem Lobov. McGregor returned the favor by throwing a dolly at a bus after UFC 223 media day — the same bus in which Khabib was present. This incident fueled one of the greatest rivalries in modern MMA history.

The UFC seized the opportunity to promote a mega-fight between Khabib and Conor. The fight took place on October 7, 2018, inside the T-Mobile Arena. Although McGregor had his moments, the ‘Eagle’ dominated the match.

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Joe Rogan recalls Khabib Nurmagomedov vs Conor McGregor

On October 9, 2018, episode of the Joe Rogan Experience (w/John Dudley), Rogan broke down Khabib vs Conor.

Like most of his fights, the Russian struck Conor before taking him to the ground. The objective was to be unpredictable. Soon after his first takedown, Nurmagomedov established his dominance on the ground and controlled Conor for the majority of the round.

The second round was a spectacular one, especially for Khabib. In the words of Joe Rogan:

“He cracked Conor with that big right hand….He landed the bigger shot. There was one big, giant shot that was landed in that fight. It was by him (Khabib). Conor hit him with a pretty good front kicks to the body. But, didn’t really get much off on the feet.”

It was the first and the only knockdown of the Irishman’s career. Furthermore, Joe reiterated that Conor got mauled on the ground. Also, he praised Al Iaquinta for his performance against Khabib.

“This fight just makes Al Iaquinta look like God. That’s the most impressive thing about it. Al Iaquinta went five rounds with him, stood toe to toe with him. You know, gave him at least a struggle. At least gave him a bit of adversity.” Joe Rogan told John Dudley.

McGregor found some success in the third round. It is the only round that Khabib lost in his entire career.

Post-fight drama

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The fight ended in the fourth round when Conor McGregor tapped out to a neck crank. However, the show did not end there. Nurmagomedov jumped over the cage and tried to attack McGregor’s BJJ coach – Dillon Danis, who was hurling abuses at the Dagestani.

Khabib Nurmagomedov is held back outside the cage after fighting Conor McGregor in a lightweight title mixed martial arts bout at UFC 229. (John Locher / Associated Press)

Consequently, Khabib’s teammate—Zubaira Tukhugov—attacked Conor inside the octagon. Rogan was particularly upset with the situation and believed that Tukhugov should be the one in trouble.

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“The guy who rushed in the cage and punched Conor in the face, that guy should be in the most trouble.”

In the aftermath of UFC 229, Khabib was forced to pay a huge fine of $500,000 and suspended for 9 months. Whereas Conor received a shorter suspension with a $50,000 fine.

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Shantanu Mayenkar

530 articles

MMA | Boxing

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