Conor McGregor’s Coach Previews Dustin Poirier Rematch, Future
Owen Roddy, the striking coach for former UFC champion Conor McGregor, talked shop with the boys at Submission Radio recently.
Owen Roddy has worked closely with Conor McGregor over the years as his striking coach.
Roddy has helped fine-tune the former UFC champion ahead of his return this Saturday night vs. Dustin Poirier. The rematch will headline UFC 257 from Abu Dhabi and Fight Island.
Recently, Roddy stopped by Submission Radio to talk “Notorious,” the fight and more with the crew.
Owen’s memories from Conor’s first win over Dustin in 2014
“I knew Poirier was a tough opponent. It was a big test. It was the first time Conor had fought in Vegas, the fight capital. It was a huge deal for Irish MMA, huge deal for Conor, for the team, and a big task as well. Poirier was on a pretty good run at that time and a big test, but I don’t really change my opinion on how fights are gonna go when Conor’s fighting. Once Conor lands that blow on anybody, it’s very, very hard to recover. And then if you’re not asleep, you’re almost out on your feet. And you don’t want a sniper like Conor waiting for you to miss again, to put you to sleep. So, I knew once Conor landed the shot it was gonna be very hard for Poirier to recover. But it was an amazing night, it was a big deal. I kind of nervous, cause it was early in the career, it was the first time he fought in Vegas. But you don’t worry too much, cause you know what work has gone into the camp. And he put a lot of work into that first camp, and he spent a lot, a lot of work in this camp as well.”
If Owen takes much from the first fight going into the second one this weekend
“Yeah, it’s a different fight. You fight somebody twice, it’s a different fight. Who knows what’s gonna happen? But the same thing applies, in my opinion. Conor will land. It’s inevitable that he’s gonna land that shot. He’s gonna land on Poirier, and it’s just how long Poirier can take the punishment. He is very durable and he’s tough and he’s good, and he’s got a lot of tricks, and he’s got problems that we’ve addressed in the camp. But when it comes down to it, when Conor lands, it’s gonna be how long can Poirier last.”
Conor predicting he’ll finish the fight in less than 60 seconds, and if Poirier has improved enough to last longer
“I think it comes down to strategy and whatever strategy Poirier comes in with. So, it’s hard to say. If he comes in looking to exchange, it will be quick, I’d imagine. If he comes in and runs, it might take a little bit longer. Poirier has improved an awful lot. I’m not trying to disrespect Poirier, he’s a phenomenal fighter, but Conor has also improved an awful lot as well, and I think Conor has improved more than Poirier. So, I can only foresee the same kind of outcome.”
What makes Poirier most dangerous
“What he’s known for, I don’t think it’s gonna be a danger to Conor. But what he’s known for is his pace and his durability. That’s what he’s known for. But unfortunately, that’s different when you’re getting hit by somebody so precise and so powerful and so fast, that it’s just different.”
On Conor’s cardio and people saying Dustin’s best chances are in the third, fourth and fifth round
“I doubt it’s gonna go that far. But if it does go to three, four and five, I think it’s gonna be worse for Poirier. I can’t see it going that far, but I think it would be worse for Poirier, if I’m being honest. Because you don’t want Conor hitting you for 25 minutes. And he can set the pace, Conor. He’s in phenomenal shape. He’s in the best shape I’ve ever seen in my life. Physically, mentally. So, I think it would be dangerous. I think Poirier would be taking a lot of dangerous blows if he managed to stay in there. But I still don’t see him staying in there.”
How the 2021 McGregor would have done against Khabib at UFC 229
“I think that would’ve went the same way as it always does when Conor fights people. I think he would have knocked Khabib out. No disrespect to Khabib. Like, he’s a phenomenal wrestler and a phenomenal mixed martial artist, but in my opinion Conor is the best fighter to ever do it, MMA fighter to ever do it. And when he’s on, nobody on planet earth can touch him. And yeah, I think he would have knocked him out.”
If Khabib’s presence on Fight Island and in the fighter hotel is a concern or distraction for Conor or the team
“No. Listen, we’re here to do a job. Conor’s here to do a job. Poirier is the challenge at hand, and that’s what we’re here to look after. We’re not gonna sleep on Poirier, and we’re gonna go in, we have a fantastic game plan, we’ve left no stone unturned. You’re gonna see the best version of Conor McGregor ever. We’re gonna go in and we’re gonna do it on Saturday night, and we’re not gonna be worried about who’s there or who’s around or whatever. That’s irrelevant.”
If Conor’s wild trash talking days are behind him now that’s older and more mature
“To be honest, when Conor was coming up, he had a point to prove as well. He believed in himself, we believed in him, but the rest of the world didn’t. See, and when you have this young kid, very confident, very sure of himself, a lot of people don’t like that, because we all want to be like that, but it’s very hard for you to come across that way. It takes somebody that’s really sure of themselves, really, really confident themselves. Conor was that person, he had a lot to prove, and he proved it all. He doesn’t need to prove anything to anybody anymore. He doesn’t have to say he’s gonna do this and do that. He’s done it all. Now, if somebody talks shit or if somebody’s saying shit, you’ll get that back, you’ll get that quick wit. That’s all still there. But it’s just, he doesn’t need to do it.”
“And, the way the last fight went, there was a lot of respect between Conor and Cerrone. And there’s definitely mutual respect between Conor and Poirier. So, there’s no need for it. But rest assured, if Poirier was to come out and start giving Conor a lot of crap and if that’s the way it had have went, Conor would’ve been on top of him. Let’s just say that. But there’s no need. There’s no need for it. Both fighters respect each other, and they’re just gonna let their hands do that talking on Saturday night.”